Monday, October 29, 2007

Arctic melt drives Alaskan Walrus onto land

The Warlus are shifting onto the land. "The Big question is, whether they'll find sufficient prey where they are looking".

Clip stolen from Pokkets:
clipped from www.mail.com
By DAN JOLING

Thousands of walrus have appeared on Alaska's northwest coast in what conservationists are calling a dramatic consequence of global warming melting the Arctic sea ice

Alaska's walrus, especially breeding females, in summer and fall are usually found on the Arctic ice pack. But the lowest summer ice cap on record put sea ice far north of the outer continental shelf, the shallow, life-rich shelf of ocean bottom in the Bering and Chukchi seas
Walrus feed on clams, snails and other bottom dwellers. Given the choice between an ice platform over water beyond their 630-foot diving range or gathering spots on shore, thousands of walrus
picked Alaska's rocky beaches

"It looks to me like animals are shifting their distribution to find prey," said Tim Ragen, executive director of the federal Marine Mammal Commission. "The big question is whether they will be able to find sufficient prey in areas where they are looking."

Walrus need either ice or land to rest
they cannot swim indefinitely
blog it

2 comments:

john@scribblesheet said...

Well, it looks like that certain species may be under threat. This doesn't surprise me. However, until people are seriously under threat it is unlikely much will happen.

Io1100 said...

I don't see how it could survive.
Its prey doesn't live on land.