Thousands of walruses are congregating on Alaska’s northwest coast, a sign that their Arctic sea ice environment has been altered by climate change.
Chad Jay, a U.S. Geological Survey walrus researcher, said Wednesday that about 3,500 walruses were near Icy Cape on the Chukchi Sea, some 140 miles southwest of Barrow.
Animals the agency tagged with satellite transmitters also were detected on shore at Cape Lisburne about 150 miles farther down the coast.
Walruses for years came ashore intermittently during their fall southward migration but not so early and not in such numbers.
“This is actually all new,” Jay said. “They did this in 2007, and it’s a result of the sea ice retreating off the continental shelf.”
ederal managers and researchers say walruses hauling out on shore could lead to deadly stampedes and too much pressure on prey within swimming range. Projections of continued sea ice loss means the phenomenon likely is not going away.
“It’s more of the same,” Jay said. “What we’ve been seeing over the past few years with reduced sea ice conditions, we might be seeing this more and more often, and it’s probably not good for the walruses,” he said.
Unlike many seals, walruses cannot swim indefinitely and must rest periodically between feeding forays. They rely on sea ice as a platform for foraging for clams in the shallow waters of the outer continental shelf. They can dive up to 630 feet for clams and other sea floor creatures but mostly feed in waters of less than 330 feet, Jay said. Beyond the continental shelf, water can reach depths of 10,000 feet or more.
An estimated 6,000 or more walruses congregated on Alaska’s shore in the fall of 2007, taking scientists by surprise.
Herds were in the tens of thousands at some locations on the Russian side of the Chukchi Sea, with an estimated 40,000 animals at Point Shmidt. Russian biologists reported 3,000 to 4,000 walruses out of population of perhaps 200,000 died, mostly young animals crushed in stampedes.
Alaska herds did not experience that sort of mortality but scientists acknowledge a concern when the marine mammals are concentrated on arather than hundreds of miles of sea ice edge.
“They may have a much higher predation pressure on those nearshore areas when they’re using those land haulouts than when they’re using sea ice,” Jay said. …
via Walruses congregate on Alaska shore as ice melts – Yahoo! News.
This is why one of the world’s great visionaries,Â John Lennon, said years ago, “I am the walrus.” What he obviously meant is that we are all in this together.Â The non-human animals on Earth are running out of time.
What they need to do is all get together as a group and figure out how exterminate us. Ants, birds, bats, elephants, bacteria, they could all do something. I’m kidding of course, but it would make a great movie.
I’m starting to believe that humans are just smart enough to be dangerous, but too stupid to keep from destroying the planet.
The solution is simple, but touchy: Â We must, as a species decide to stop our out of control breeding.
If we do not face the human overpopulation reality, it will face us.
If you were to take a standard sheet of writing paper .1mm thick and cut it into two sheets, placing one atop the other, it would then be .2mm thick. Then, cutting the stack of two and making a stack of 4 sheets, it would then be .4mm thick. Believe it or not, if you continued to do this just one hundred times, doubling the size of the stack each time, the thickness of the stack would be 1.334 x 1011 light-years. This is an example of exponential growth, where the rate of growth is always proportional to it’s present size.
Exponential growth also applies to the the human population. It begins growing very slowly, but over generations the growth rate increases more and more rapidly, similar to a snowball affect. It took the human population thousands of years to reach 1 billion in 1804.Â However, it took only 123 years for us to double to 2 billion in 1927. The population hit 4 billion in 1974 (only 47 years), and if we continue at our current rate, the human population will reach 8 billion in 2028. Doubling from our present count of 6.8 billion to 13.6 billion will have a much greater impact than our last couple doublings combined.
I’m doing my part. I have had no children. I will likely be the last of my kind.Â Sad, but necessary, as I see it.Â I’d like to do more…. What can one single person do to make the biggest impact on global climate change? I don’t like war, so my startingÂ World War III is not going to happen.Â How do you stop people from breeding?
Have I just prevented 2,534 humans from existing in the future by typing the above?