x

Society

Norway Puts Down Freya the Walrus That Drew Oslo Crowds

August 15, 2022

BERLIN — Authorities in Norway have euthanized a walrus that had drawn crowds of spectators in the Oslo Fjord after concluding that it posed a risk to humans.

The 600-kilogram (1,320-pound) female walrus, known affectionately as Freya, became a popular attraction in Norway in recent weeks, despite warnings from officials that people should refrain from getting close and posing for pictures with the massive marine mammal. Freya liked to clamber on small boats, causing damage to them.

Walruses are protected and as recently as last month officials said they hoped Freya would leave of her own accord and that euthanasia would be a last resort.

Norway’s Directorate of Fisheries said Freya was put down early Sunday “based on an overall assessment of the continued threat to human safety.”

A walrus named Freya at the waterfront in Frognerstranda in Oslo, Norway, Monday July 18, 2022. (Tor Erik Schrøder/NTB Scanpix via AP)

“Through on-site observations the past week, it was made clear that the public has disregarded the current recommendation to keep a clear distance to the walrus,” it said. “Therefore, the Directorate has concluded, the possibility for potential harm to people was high and animal welfare was not being maintained.”

The head of the directorate, Frank Bakke-Jensen, said other options — including moving the animal elsewhere — were considered. But authorities concluded it wasn’t a viable option.

“We have sympathies for the fact that the decision can cause a reaction from the public, but I am firm that this was the right call,” Bakke-Jensen said. “We have great regard for animal welfare, but human life and safety must take precedence.”

Atlantic walruses normally live in the Arctic. It is unusual but not unheard of for them to travel into the North and Baltic Seas. Another walrus, nicknamed Wally, was seen last year on beaches and even a lifeboat dock in Wales and elsewhere.

RELATED

ATHENS - "The absolute priority of the government is the continuous increase in citizens' income with permanent measures, something that becomes even more necessary due to the persistent, imported price spike," government spokesperson, Pavlos Marinakis, said on Thursday during a press briefing held in Thessaloniki.

Top Stories

Columnists

A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

Video

9 Are Facing Charges in What Police in Canada Say is the Biggest Gold Theft in the Country’s History

TORONTO (AP) — Police said nine people are facing charges in what authorities are calling the biggest gold theft in Canadian history from Toronto’s Pearson International airport a year ago.

STATEN ISLAND, NY - New York State Assemblyman Michael Tannousis has submitted a bill that repeals Congestion Pricing plan of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) was announced by Republican state lawmaker Michalis Tannousis at a press conference held on Monday, April 15, at the Verazzano Bridge monument.

ATHENS - "The absolute priority of the government is the continuous increase in citizens' income with permanent measures, something that becomes even more necessary due to the persistent, imported price spike," government spokesperson, Pavlos Marinakis, said on Thursday during a press briefing held in Thessaloniki.

PARIS (AP) — Reuters photographer Mohammed Salem captured this year’s prestigious World Press Photo of the Year award Thursday with a depiction of loss and sorrow in Gaza, a heartrending photo of a Palestinian woman cradling the body of her young niece.

TORONTO (AP) — Police said nine people are facing charges in what authorities are calling the biggest gold theft in Canadian history from Toronto’s Pearson International airport a year ago.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. [email protected]

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.