This one’s overdue – my friend Kevin, who works for the NASA Earth Observatory, turned me on to the continually developing info on the USGS site related to the huge Pacific Walrus haul-out last fall. You may remember this, if you keep up with walrus news, which of course you do! I posted about it here. Disappearing sea ice continues to be a huge threat to the walrus.
USGS tagged many of the walruses during the haul out and information about this project is here, along with a video showing more walruses than you have ever seen. Check it out – click here to go to the USGS page.
Various links associated with this are here at the USGS Alaska Science Center walrus resource page.
The USGS Alaksa Science Center maintains an animated tracking map of the tagged walruses. From their site…
Researchers attached satellite radio-tags on 40 walruses in the northern Chukchi Sea in mid-July and on 34 walruses on the coast of northwest Alaska in late August. Russian colleagues will soon deploy additional tags on walruses on Russian shores of the Chukchi Sea. Tracking data from this study are intended to help describe walrus movements, foraging areas, and sea ice habitats in the Chukchi Sea and the Chukchi Sea oil lease sale planning area and to provide insights on walrus foraging and movements during ice minimum conditions in summer.
Check out the map at this page: http://alaska.usgs.gov/science/biology/walrus/2011animation_Norseman.html