Dozens of walruses apparently shot in beachside massacre

Dozens Of Walruses Apparently Shot In Beachside Massacre
Dozens Of Walruses Apparently Shot In Beachside Massacre

Dozens of walruses appear to have been mercilessly gunned down off the Alaskan coast.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service received an email with pictures detailing the carnage: 25 dead—some decapitated—including a dozen dead babies.

The walruses were likely killed for their ivory—many were missing their tusks.

If so, that's illegal under federal law which provides that walruses can only be slaughtered in a non-wasteful fashion and only by Alaska Natives.

Anyone can take ivory found from a dead walrus, but the scene at the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge was apparently littered with bullet holes.

Officials refuse to speculate until the investigation is complete.

A subsistence hunter noted, "This kind of stuff we don't tolerate...if they have gunshot wounds and everything and the heads were gone then someone's doing something that should not ever be done."

The beachside massacre is just the latest setback for walruses. Climate change threatens walrus ecology by forcing the marine mammals to dangerously take refuge on land instead of the fast-melting ice they've used for ages.

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Originally published