The walrus, which weighs about 600 kilograms, has repeatedly appeared in front of the Norwegian capital Oslo over the past few weeks, lying on boats at anchor and has inadvertently grown into a summer attraction for visitors, tourists and residents Is. Walruses usually live further north.
People kept coming very close to the animal to take photos. Some even jumped into the water. Despite warnings to stop the reckless behavior, the authorities were unable to save the walrus from onlookers. “We weighed all possible options,” said director of fisheries Frank Bakke-Jensen.
Bakke-Jensen said, one can understand whether the public is now disappointed. But although animal welfare is a valuable asset, people’s lives and safety should come first, a spokesman for the authority said. Walruses chase people on paddle boards and kayaks. In July, officials wanted to avoid euthanasia at all costs. The transfer of the animal was discussed previously. However, the risks of such an action were enormous.
Environmental and animal protection organizations criticized the actions of the authorities on social networks. The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society in France called it “absolute shame for Norway” on Twitter. Officials would not shy away from killing a protected animal “instead of ensuring that spectators keep their distance”.
Norwegian animal protection organization NOAH spokeswoman Siri Martinsson told Norwegian television channel TV2 that the measure was taken in haste. Fines should have been imposed for driving away spectators. “It is very shocking. We are in a situation that presents an opportunity to be considerate towards wild animals and to teach people how to be mindful of wild animals.”
Norwegian biologist Rune A told NTB news agency that it was “extremely sad that the decision was taken to euthanize such a beautiful animal” because of how humans behave. The Blue Planet Society, an interest group working to protect the world’s oceans, called the decision “absolutely shameful”.
Following the killing, fisheries management argued that the five-year-old walrus’ well-being was greatly diminished. Quoting expert opinion, Bakke-Jensen said, the animal was exposed to a lot of stress.
During the week it became clear that “the public disregarded the current recommendation to keep a clear distance from the walrus”. The head of the agency said the operation to kill the animal was done in a “humane” manner and the carcass was taken to veterinarians for further examination. Walruses are on the endangered species list and are strictly protected.
Norwegian walrus kills Freya
The female walrus frey has been put to sleep. The Norwegian authorities announced this on Sunday.
A rescue operation was launched in France last week to retrieve a beluga whale that had strayed into the Seine. She should have been taken to a seawater tank in the English Channel city of Ouistreham, 100 miles away, and examined and looked after for a few days. The whale died while being transported by truck due to breathing problems.