Norwegian officials Killed Freya, a 1,300-pound walrus that rose to fame while sinking boats this summerHe announced on Sunday, claiming that he was euthanized due to public safety concerns due to the crowd attracted by him.
“The decision to euthanize walruses was made based on an overall assessment of the continuing threat to human safety,” said Fisheries Directorate Frank Bakke-Jensen. said in a statement,
“Highly skilled and trained personnel execute orders into the conduct of existing routines and regulations for euthanasia for marine mammals,” Bakke-Jensen said.
Walrus – whose name refers to Norse goddess of fertility and love – She traveled to the beach of the country to gain fame in the last few months, damage to boats and ships After being ridden to rest for several days or weeks at a time. But they have been spotted as early as 2019, according to Rune A, a doctoral student in pedagogy of science at the University of South-Eastern Norway, who has mapped Freya’s journey through photographs taken by scientists and amateur photographers who have worked on social media. Pictures have been shared on the media. and online database.
On Sunday, AE criticized the authorities’ decision to kill Freya. facebook post, calling the move “too hasty” and “totally unnecessary”. He noted that Freya had enough tracking to ensure that the public could avoid her, and that viewership would be low with the summer holidays soon ending.
Norwegian media outlets chronicled Freya’s visit this summer, and Norwegians have flocked to the Oslo coast in recent weeks to eat, sleep and rest for her. Adding to the allure was the fact that walruses usually herd in the Arctic, making her single appearance from the shores of the capital – about 1,200 miles from where scientists believe she was – more unexpected.
Experts said she was attracted to boats because they reminded her of floating Arctic ice, and advised boat owners to avoid them and park their ships to make it harder for Freya to reach them .
More walruses are hunting on land as ice in the Arctic is melting due to climate change, increasing competition for food, which may explain the extent of Freya’s travels.
directorate of fisheries said in a statement last month That “euthanasia is out of the question” and “the last option” given that the walrus is a protected species in Norway.
There are about 225,000 walruses in the world, According to the World Wildlife Fund,
agency on Thursday warned in a statement that euthanasia was an optionGiven that spectators were gathering just a few feet from the walrus to take photos, throw objects and swim.
“The animal’s welfare is clearly vulnerable. The walrus is not getting enough rest and the professionals we are interacting with believe it is stressed,” said Nadia, a senior communication consultant with the fisheries directorate. Jadani said in the statement.
According to the statement released on Sunday, Freya posed a “high” risk of potential harm to fans and spectators who did not follow official guidance to keep their distance from her.
“We have carefully considered all possible solutions. We concluded that we cannot ensure the welfare of animals by any means available,” Bakke-Jensen said.
He said his department discussed the possibility of relocating Freya with the Norwegian Institute of Marine Research, but “the sheer complexity of such an operation led us to conclude that this was not a viable option.”
“There were a number of animal welfare concerns associated with the possible relocation,” he said.
Erland Esta Lorentzen, communications consultant at Norway’s Marine Research Institute, told NBC News via email on Friday that “moving the walrus will be a difficult process, as tranquilizing it also involves the risk of drowning.”
Norwegian media outlets reported the news of Freya’s death reflected her rising fame. ,famous walrus freya is dead“Read one.”Celebrity walrus murder is gaining international attention“Read another report.
“We sympathize for the fact that the decision may cause a backlash with the public, but I am firm that it was the right call. We have great respect for animal welfare, but human life and safety must be given priority ,” Bakke-Jensen said.
Caroline Radnofsky contribution,