Asking people to stay away from the walrus
A walrus now lies on the beach in Álftanes. The walrus has been on the beach for several hours, but people are asked not to come to the area and to go no closer than a hundred feet.
Þóra Jónasdóttir, a veterinarian at the Food Authority, tells mbl.is that it is very important that people stay away from the walrus as they can be dangerous for people. She also says that the animal’s health is at the forefront and reiterates the importance of not disturbing the animal.
Capable of moving fast
“It should be communicated to people not to come and not to be going to the walrus. Any disturbance stresses wild animals, and the walrus may need rest and time to recover from the stress of the journey. It is best if people do not come.”
She says that although walruses seem like heavy, slow - moving animals, they can move very quickly if they feel threatened.
“They can then use their fangs to protect themselves. In addition, animals can also spread diseases that can infect us.”
Here it looks like it is sleeping, but the animal can move fast if it feels threatened and the big fangs can be a danger to humans, as well as possible diseases it might carry. mbl.is/Eggert Jóhannesson
Police heading to the area
It says the same is true of drones, noting that Food Administration officials have called on the police to come to the area to ensure that people stay away from the walrus. Police are expected to visit the area from time to time.
“A vet at the Food and Marine Research Institute and a member of the Marine Research Institute have assessed the condition and the wounds and assessed the animal as being in a good condition. We continue to monitor the animal but if the wild animal is in distress, sick or injured, the local community should be responsible for putting the animal in to help or killing it if it is needed.”