Massive Walrus 'Haul-Out' Spotted On Alaska Beach As Arctic Sea Ice Continues To Melt

October 1, 2014 7:44 PM

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Massive Walrus 'Haul-Out' Spotted On Alaska Beach As Arctic Sea Ice Continues To Melt

As Arctic sea ice steadily vanishes, record numbers of walruses are forced to “haul-out” on northern Pacific beaches. Over the weekend, more than 35,000 of the flippered mammals were spotted on a beach near the village of Point Lay in northwestern Alaska -- the largest gathering ever recorded by scientists working with the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Walruses typically spread out broadly across sea ice in the shallow feeding areas of the Chukchi Sea, according to the World Wildlife Fund, a conservation organization. But the shrinking ice is forcing the creatures to swim long distances to reach shores -- a far more hazardous journey than travelin...

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