Scientific Name: Odobenus Rosmarus
Size: 2.5-3.6m (8-12ft)
Weight: 800-2,000kg (0.9-2.2tons)
Top Speed: 35km/h (21.7mph)
Life Span: 40-50 years
Group name: Herd
Did you know? The walrus' scientific name, Odobenus rosmarus, is Latin for "tooth-walking sea-horse."
What does a walrus look like?
There are three species of walrus. The Atlantic walrus, the Pacific walrus and the Laptev walrus found in the Laptev Sea. The walrus is most closely related to the seal and although the walrus and the seal are obviously similar, the walrus has some distinctive features such as the large tusks on the face of the walrus. Walruses have enlarged upper canine teeth, or tusks, up to 3 feet long. The walrus uses its tusks to chop breathing holes in ice and to get from water onto floes, jabbing the ice as it hoists up its body.
Where do walruses live?
The walrus is a large marine mammal that has flippers to help it swim. The walrus is found in the colder waters of the Northern Hemisphere, but the walrus is much more adapted specifically to the conditions of the Arctic Circle.
What does a walrus eat?
The walrus has a carnivorous diet which mainly consists of shellfish and echinoderms such as starfish and sea urchins. Occasionally the walrus will hunt fish, seals and young whales. The walrus uses it's enormous tusks to hold larger prey down so that the walrus can then eat it.
How does the waltus live?
The walrus is a particularly sociable marine mammal and can often be seen in large groups. Walrus' can be heard grunting and making loud bellowing noises at each other but they become particularly aggressive during the mating season. The male walrus displays the most aggressive behaviour as the males have to fight to gain the respect of a female walrus.
Did you know this about walruses?
The walrus uses jets of water and rapid flipper movements to clear the murky sea floor in search of food.
The walrus' mouth acts like a vacuum. By drawing its tongue rapidly into its mouth, like a piston, the walrus creates the suction needed to draw clams and other bivalves out of their shells.
Walruses have enlarged upper canine teeth, or tusks, up to three feet (1 m) long.
They feed on invertebrates such as crustaceans, starfish, and mollusks, which they suck out of the shell. They also prey on fish and seals.
The walrus uses its tusks to chop breathing holes in ice and to get from water onto floes, jabbing the ice as it hoists up its body.
In struggles for dominance, the male displays his tusks. Usually the behavior is limited to posturing, but violence can ensue, with a walrus striking his tusks point-first into his opponent.
Adult males develop hide thickenings on the neck and shoulders, perhaps due to scarring from such battles.
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Walrus Coloring pages
Print free Walrus coloring pages, click on the image to open the large version.