Facts and Features of Arctic Walrus

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class : Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family : Odobeni...
Gestation Period : 15 months
Litter size : 1
Baby Name : Pup
Weaning Age: 2 years
State of Conservation :Threatened
Size o...
these huge animals from slipping on ice.Walruses have long tusks which are used both to fight and dig
ice when coming out ...
mothers until they are two or three years old.Young females tend to stay close to their mother, but
males begin to venture...
the thick layer of ice.Walruses feed on the darkness of the ocean and is known to regularly move on
depths of between 80m ...
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Facts and features of arctic walrus

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FACTS AND FEATURES OF ARCTIC WALRUS

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Facts and features of arctic walrus

  1. 1. Facts and Features of Arctic Walrus Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class : Mammalia Order: Carnivora Family : Odobenidae Genre : Odobenus Scientific Name : Odobenus rosmarus Common Name : Walrus Other Names: Atlantic Walrus and Pacific Walrus Group: Mammals Number of species : 2 Geographic Location: Arctic Circle Habitat :Rocky Coasts and ice lands Color : Grey, Brown Skin: Hair Size ( L ) : 2.27 m - 3.6 m ( 7.6 ft - 11.6 ft ) Weight: 405 kg - 1,7020 kg ( 890 pounds - 3750 pounds ) Maximum speed : 38kph ( 24 mph ) Diet : Carnivorus Food:shellfish, worms , snails,octopus Predators :whales , polar bears,Humans Lifestyle : Diurnal Group: Herd Duration of the life : 41-50 years Sexual Maturity Age: 6-10 years
  2. 2. Gestation Period : 15 months Litter size : 1 Baby Name : Pup Weaning Age: 2 years State of Conservation :Threatened Size of the population estimated : 220000-240000 Major threats : Hunting and loss of habitat Special feature :Long tusks growing upto 1m long Funny Facts : Lives in freezing waters of Arctic regions Classification and Evolution of Walrus The walrus is a mammal found in the marine icy cold waters of the Arctic Regions. It is considered as more closely related to Fur Selas, seals , walruses are the second largest marine related mammals that come together to breed after elephant seals and separated among pinnipeds ,due to their long tusks and sensitive whiskers.Currently there are two different species of walrus that minutely vary in appearance with respect to geographic location , which are Atlantic walrus and Pacific walrus.However, it is widely whispered whether or not there is actually a third species thought as the Laptev walrus found in Laptev Sea ,which thought to be a location of Pacific walrus that specifically inhabit the area.The walrus is taken as an increasingly vulnerable even though the collection of data on these elusive creatures can be difficult so it is difficult to accurately determine the current population status of walrus. Anatomy and Appearance of Walrus Walruses consists of large and elongated bodies with head and neck are quite wider and taper towards the tail,that is summarized with skin.Its skin is covered with a thick layer of scattered hairs usually gray or brown in color. However, while bathing out of the water , walrus skin (which can be up to 4 cm thick) a pink - red color develops.Walruses have two pairs of wings that help them through the water with their hind flippers give power to the bodies, while the front wings are used to guide them in the right direction.On surface, they move unconventionally on all the flippers underneath at 90 degree to further support.The skin on the bottom of the wings is rough and gnarled that protects
  3. 3. these huge animals from slipping on ice.Walruses have long tusks which are used both to fight and dig ice when coming out of the water . Distribution and Habitat of Walrus Walruses are found throughout the north Atlantic and Pacific Oceans , inhabiting ice floes and rocky coasts , along with spending a lot of time in the cold water. During the winter months , when the ice is so hard , walruses prefer thinner ice areas which can easily break through the surface of the water below.In the summer months when the ice declines ,these are found in remote areas of the rocky coast.Instead of being very suitable freezing conditions in north, walruses have sometimes been known to move into the south areas of central Canada, throughout the UK and also near to Spanish coast.Although they spend most of their time in and around the Arctic Circle, which aregrowing under threat of global warming is rapidly running out of ice that these animals have learned to trust . Behavior and Lifestyle of Walrus Walruses are highly social animals that live in large herds on the ice floes that can hold up to thousands of individuals and consist primarily of females (cows ) and their calves, along with a number of dominant males (bulls ).When move into water to feed these huge groups break up into small bands numbering only ten individuals so there is less competition for food.Male walruses are almost twice the weight of their female and have longer tusks that can grow up to one meter in length and are mainly used to fight with competitors to the most favored breeding and female residing there.They are known for making a variety of vocal sounds including strong bellows during breeding season that easily and loudly produce , thanks to the two air bags in the neck. Reproduction and Life Cycles of Walrus Walruses breed in winter season between the months of January and March.After a gestation period lasts about 15 months , one pup is born on ice having length of upto 1.2 meters long and weight up to 75 kg. Baby Walrus have short , soft hair covering their bodies, wings are pale grey in color and a thick , white mustache with no teeth.They just suck the milk of its mother during its first six months , when they beginto eat solid foods. After first year , walrus pups are almost three times the size they were at birth and begin to become independent , although they tend to stay very close to their
  4. 4. mothers until they are two or three years old.Young females tend to stay close to their mother, but males begin to venture out of the pack to join groups of bachelors.Female walruses are capable of begin sex at about 6 or 7 years old , but men are not mature until they are at least 10 years old, but often do not reproduce until they can demonstrate proficiency around 5 years later. Diet and Prey of Walrus Walruses are carnivores that hunt and only eat other animals to survive.They have a thick mustache that contains about 450 very sensitive whiskers that help them find food in dark and turbid water at depths of about 100 meters below the surface.Walrus find food mostly on the ocean floor and are known to expel air and water in the sediment to reveal hidden food under the sand .Initially they suck food into the mouth rather than chewing by teeth and even seafood are known to grip between lips and sucking the soft creature from inside the shell, before spitting the shell on the water.Walruses feed on a variety of prey species , including clams , snails , worms, squid, octopus and even some species of slow-moving fish .Some populations of walruses are also known to hunt seals . Attackers and Threats of Walrus Because of its large size and aggressive nature,have few predators in their natural surroundings , with the exception of the pods of killer whales and polar bear, as they can easily defend themselves with the tusks. Humans are the most common predators of the walrus, as they are hunted for meat , skin and oil from local populations.They are also affected by water pollution,including oil contamination affecting them, but also through their prey , along with large fishing vessel that the walruses prey and not only left with less food , but also cause serious noise pollution in waters. Interesting Facts of Walrus Walruses are well comfortable to living in some of the coldest regions in the world, with thick skin covering a thick layer of blubber (fat ) that keeps warm.Its tusks were originally designed to help during feeding, but they know it's more to do with social status.Walruses dig their tusks into the ice surfaces to help them transport their enormous bodies out of the water , but also put their tusks into the ice so that they are able to sleep while their bodies remain submerged beneath the waves. Walruses are also known for using their long and powerful tusks as an axe to cut their way through
  5. 5. the thick layer of ice.Walruses feed on the darkness of the ocean and is known to regularly move on depths of between 80m and 100m for almost half an hour at a time.However, recent studies gives that , depending on the availability of prey ,they are known to reach around depth of 180 meters below the water surface. Relationship of Walrus with humans For thousands of years , local people have thought about walruses as much like humans as they are known to show qualities of intelligence , they are slow to breed and give long and very good care of their young. Walruses also been hunted by people in their home countries for thousands of years as a source of food, but in recent years have also been increasingly hunted for the ivory of their tusks, which is considered to be the second in size and quality only to elephants .The large-scale hunting has decreased populations of walrus, especially in some areas , but also increasing amounts of pollution that is having a great effect on wild populations. Conservation Status of Walrus Nowadays , the walrus is considered as Threatened species, although the data are difficult to collect in these bottom-feeding mammals .Since the 18th century these are declining, with increasing levels of hunting and human activity and , more recently,due to decreasing amount of ice due to global warming.Although the exact population size is unknown , it is estimated that there are between 220,000 and 240,000 walrus remain in the icy waters of the Arctic Regions.

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