Walruses Forced Onshore Due to Shrinking Sea Ice
I am the Walrus
This isn't the first time Walrus have been forced ashore en masse due to their shrinking habitat of sea ice, and undoubtedly not the last.
Last week more than 35,000 Walruses "hauled out" along the coast of northwestern Alaska because nearly all the sea ice the animals use to rest on had all but completely melted away. In fact, for six of the past eight years the sea ice Walrus depend on has completely melted away by mid-September.
This most current event is so large that the FAA has rerouted flight over the area to avoid jet noise causing a stampede.
As reported in ClimateCrocks.com, publications such as the Daily Caller have made an attempt to discount the trend of declining sea ice and its impact on wildlife, but the attempt is easily debunked. While haul-outs are not necessarily uncommon, biologist Anatoly Kochnev of Russia’s Pacific Institute of Fisheries and Oceanography reported on NBC that extended beachings of this size only started happening in the late 1990's.
Image credit: South Bend Voice, courtesy flickr