Watch: Arctic Walrus Which Was...

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Watch: Arctic Walrus Which Washed Ashore In Kerry Reappears In Wales

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1:34 PM - 21 Mar 2021



An Arctic walrus that washed ashore in Co Kerry last weekend has been sighted in Wales.

Experts have assessed the animal's markings and are confident the one spotted on rocks in South Pembrokeshire yesterday morning is the same mammal.

The walrus appeared on Valentia Island last Sunday and was said by a local marine biologist to be “extremely tired and emaciated” when last seen in Kerry.

He is likely to have come from Greenland and has now made his way even further from home to Wales.

Welsh Marine Life Rescue say the animal has now moved on, but it may be on another beach in the area.

Terry Leadbetter, founder of Welsh Marine Life Rescue, could not believe it when he received reports about sightings of the walrus.

He told Today FM that he received a call from a member of the public about the sighting yesterday morning.

"We were a bit sceptical about it and felt it was probably just a grey Silva (seal) that had washed up on the rocks," he said.

They went to investigate and "sure enough, in a craggy cave next to a beach" was the walrus lying on a rock.

Cracking video footage of the walrus.
He headed back into the water after a good few hours on the rocky shore. Let's hope he finds his way home.

Posted by Welsh Marine Life Rescue on Saturday, March 20, 2021

 

The group had received the report about the walrus from Kerry which affirmed to them they were dealing with a similar animal.

He and other people from various animal groups spent the day monitoring the mammal and ensure people kept their distance.

"It's imperative they keep away from it, we don't know enough about these animals to know how dangerous they are or what injuries they could cause if they got too close to a person," he said.

"They're quite timid animals by all accounts and the last thing we want to do is to scare it off and cause it to become weaker if it's laying out to rest.

"This animal is obviously not in its local environment, the waters are going to be much warmer out here, so that could add to a stress factor."

Mr Leadbetter believes it is a young animal and said contrary to reports it is the size of a cow, it is actually similar to an adult grey seal in size.

This is significantly smaller than an adult walrus, with his weight estimated to be around 150 to 200 kilos.

"Its tusks were around three to four inches long so they weren't fully matured, so what the outlook is for this animal I don't really know," he added.

"I'm a little bit concerned about it, whether it will survive or not is a little bit doubtful in my mind.

"It's unlikely to track back to the polar region, I think it will probably travel further south."

Reporting by Marita Moloney and Kerry Mitchell

Main image: An Arctic walrus which appeared in Kerry last week is now believed to be in Wales. Photo: Welsh Marine Life Rescue


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Arctic Walrus Kerry Kerry Walrus Valentia Island Wales Walrus

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