General information

Iñupiaq Name: Aiviq
Scientific Name: Odobenus rosmarus


Other Studies on Walrus in Alaska

Village-Based Walrus Habitat Use Studies in the Chukchi Sea (ADF&G)

The Arctic Marine Mammal Program of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game worked with walrus hunters from St. Lawrence Island to deploy 34 satellite transmitters on walruses in June of 2013. As part of a walrus research cruise with USGS and USFWS from 4 June to 1 July 2013, 28 transmitters were deployed on females (13 of which had calves of the year) and six on males. Tags were deployed 6–27 June from near St. Lawrence Island in the Bering Sea to near Point Lay in the Chukchi Sea. Clarence Irrigoo from Gambell and Perry Pungowiyi from Savoonga participated in the research cruise and were trained to deploy tags and collect biopsies. This project benefited considerably from their hunting skills and their knowledge of walrus behavior. Furthermore, ADF&G would like to thank the crew of the R/V Norseman II for their untiring assistance. Funding for this project is provided by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM). Current maps and additional project information, including the models of tags deployed, results from our TEK surveys, and links to updates for other projects can be viewed on the ADF&G webpage above. You can also access daily updates and an animated map of the the tagged walrus movements on the USGS website. For low bandwidth connections, please try this link.

Historical Pacific Walrus Haulouts

Walrus Monitoring (USFWS)

This website provides updates on the US Fish and Wildlife Service walrus monitoring program in Alaska.

  • Walrus Fact Sheet (updated January 2011).

Walrus Tracking (USGS)

View the tracks of walruses that were radio-tagged on this website. You may also review a radio-tagging field report for each of their field efforts. These field reports provide maps of the radio-deployments along with tracking.

Journal Articles on Walrus:

  • Rausch, R.L., J.C. George, and H.K. Brower. 2007. Effect of climatic warming on the Pacific Walrus, and potential modification of its helminth faunaJournal of Parasitology 93(5):1247-1251.
  • Sheffield, G., and J.M. Grebmeier. 2009. Pacific walrus (Odobenus rosmarus divergens): Differential prey digestion and diet. Marine Mammal Science 25(4):761-777. DOI: 10.1111/j.1748-7692.2009.00316.x.
  • Jay, C.V. et al. 2011. Projected status of the Pacific walrus (Odobenus rosmarus divergens) in the twenty-first century. Polar Biology 34:1065-1084. DOI 10.1007/s00300-011-0967-4.

More Information on Walrus

Endangered Species Act (ESA) Listing of Walrus

NOTE: The ESA listing does not affect hunters’ ability to take walrus on the North Slope. No regulations are projected for the near future but the NSB and the Eskimo Walrus Commission will work together to limit any possible regulatory actions that may be taken in the future.

Pacific Walrus and the ESA – USFWS and Eskimo Walrus Commission – June 2014.

Questions and Answers about the Use of Marine Mammal Parts and Products (NOAA).

Coastal Protected Area established in Chukotka for Walrus [Haulout] and Polar Bear – News article published on Dec. 13th, 2010.

Marine Mammal Commission: Species List – Pacific Walrus.

Walrus Sound – Sounds of the Arctic – This poster with sound files was put together by Catherine Berchok (National Marine Fisheries Service, NOAA) and Kate Stafford (University of Washington, Applied Physics Lab) with support from BOEMRE (Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement) and the NSB.

Alaska Department of Fish and Game Notebook Series Walrus.

Alaska Department of Fish and Game Species Profile Walrus.

Sea Ice for Walrus Outlook (SIWO)

The Sea Ice for Walrus Outlook, an activity of the Study of Environmental Arctic Change (SEARCH) Sea Ice Outlook, is a resource for Alaska Native subsistence hunters, coastal communities, and others interested in sea ice and walrus. The SIWO will be updated weekly with information on sea ice conditions relevant to walrus in the Northern Bering Sea and southern Chukchi Sea regions of Alaska. SIWO updates will be released every Friday through late June. This collaborative effort includes weather and ice forecasters; climate scientists and sea-ice researchers at NOAA, the National Weather Service, and the University of Alaska, and the Arctic Research Consortium of the U.S. (ARCUS, with funding from the National Science Foundation’s Arctic Sciences Section), who are teaming up with Alaska Native sea-ice experts and the Eskimo Walrus Commission.

The first report of the 2013 Sea Ice for Walrus Outlook (SIWO) is now available! The Sea Ice for Walrus Outlook Facebook page is also available. The SIWO will be updated weekly with information on sea ice conditions relevant to walrus in the Northern Bering Sea and southern Chukchi Sea regions of Alaska. SIWO updates will be released every Friday. Updates and observations may be added throughout the week, as they are received. If you are a local hunter, expert, or a scientist with observations on the development of sea ice or any other aspect of walrus and sea ice, please send your comments to Kristina Creek; your comments will be included on the SIWO webpage. Local observers, please include the name of the village from which you are reporting to help organize the observations accordingly.

SIWO reports include:

  • An assessment of current ice conditions relevant to distribution and access of walrus.
  • A 10-day outlook of wind conditions.
  • Up-to-date satellite imagery for the Bering Strait and St. Lawrence Island, which are two regions of interest to coastal communities engaging in the walrus hunt.
  • Written observations of ice development from Alaska Native hunters, sea-ice experts, or researchers.
  • Additional data and resources on ice conditions.
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