August 11, 2022

Westside People

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A walrus makes headlines in Norway

(Oslo) For the past week, she’s been relaxing in the Oslo fjord, damaging some 600kg boats in the process: Freya, a young female walrus, Norway’s summer sensation.

Published at 2:45 pm yesterday.

Having already been spotted in the UK, Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden, Freya chose to spend part of the summer in Norway, where she first shot to fame by plying herself on yachts in the picturesque southern seaside village of Krakero, before moving on to do it. In the waters of the capital from July 17.

The presence of the mammal, which normally lives in the more northerly latitudes of the Arctic, piqued the interest of locals and made headlines in the press.

In this country of love Slow TV “, Newspaper The Verdens Gang It even decided for a moment to broadcast its every move live on its website.

Between two big naps – a walrus sleeps up to 20 hours a day – Freya was filmed hunting a duck, tackling a swan or, more often, sleeping on boats.

“The material damage is a shame, but how would it be if there were wild animals,” Rolf Harald Jensen, an officer of the Directorate of Fisheries, explained to the TV2 channel, while showing the unfortunately bent inflatable boat. Under animal weight.

After considering moving Freya for a while, or even euthanizing her if she posed a danger to the public, Norwegian authorities decided to let nature take its course.

“She is doing well, eating, resting and appears to be in good condition,” the Directorate of Fisheries said in a statement on Monday.

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Freya, a goddess associated with love and beauty in Norse mythology, is however not unanimous.

“Cut down Freya,” began biologist Per Espen Fjeld in a column published by public radio and television NRK on Monday.

“Freya is more expensive (to Norwegian society, editor’s note) than other animals we slaughter because they cause damage, but Freya has made a name for herself”, lamented “a pure Bambi effect”.

Officials, for their part, hammer home the need to keep one’s distance and strongly advise against swimming or kayaking near Freya, who “doesn’t need to be as lethargic and uncomfortable as one might think when he’s resting”.

“A walrus usually poses no danger to humans as long as we are at a safe distance. But if it is disturbed by humans and unable to rest adequately, it may feel threatened and attack.

A protected species, the walrus feeds mainly on invertebrates such as molluscs, shrimp, crabs and small fish. Its average adult weight is one ton for males and 700 kg for females.