Walruses are one of the largest animals inhabiting the northern seas. The body length of an adult animal sometimes reaches five meters, and weight – up to one and a half tons. With their dimensions, the walrus, among the members of its squad, will give way to only the sea elephant, which inhabits the southern hemisphere. The body of the animal is very massive and large. The head, in comparison with the trunk, seems a small growth on the mighty neck. The finiteness of the walrus is fins. Body color is dark brown.
On the upper lip grow a long hard mustache, which helps the walrus in the search for food. The mustache walrus uses to navigate the bottom of the sea, since already at a depth of several tens of meters, because of the ice floes on the surface, there is an impenetrable darkness.
Having carefully observed the walruses, one can get the impression that the animal already has a lot of fat. This is really true – about 20-25% of the total body weight of the walrus make up fatty deposits that serve as an energy reserve and protect the animal from the cold. Confound walrus with any other animal is almost impossible due to two massive tusks, which protrude down from the mouth. In fact, this is not exactly tusks, but simply large upper fangs. They can reach quite impressive sizes. For example, in an adult male tusks can be up to 80 cm long!
Walruses prefer to live in places where the bottom is not more than a hundred meters. The fact is that most of the walrus diet consists of benthic organisms, so the smaller the water column, the lower the energy costs for immersion. However, if life forces, then walruses are able to dive and at 150-200 meters!
After observations conducted by researchers it was found out that walruses exhale before immersion. Lowering to the bottom, the animal intensively works with its fangs, digging up the soil in search of food. Under the water, without air, the walrus can last about 10 minutes. Walruses feed mainly invertebrates: crustaceans, mollusks and worms. For a day an adult animal is able to eat up to 100 kilograms of food!
Among walruses, one can also find real predators. Such individuals are found mainly when there is not enough ordinary food for all, and they attack the landing birds. Less often there are walruses engaged in hunting constantly, and not from case to case. Usually they are single males, and they even hunt for belugas and small narwhals.
In summer, walruses arrange real rookeries on shallows or ice floes. Imagine a few dozen huge carcasses, each weighing more than a ton, lying densely to each other. One walrus leaned on the back of another with tusks, the second threw fins on the neighbor, and the third decided to swim and rummage on the backs of “resting” to the water.
During the breeding season walruses are kept in small family groups – male, female and several uneven-aged cubs. Although males do not hammer together around themselves, skirmishes between them because of females happen quite often. Mating runs from January to February. Pregnancy lasts about 16 months. The light appears more often than one cub, less often twins. The newborn weighs only 60 kilograms, and in length reaches 1.3 meters. There are no teeth for kids, but they can immediately swim!