HOME RANGE: The Pacific walrus is found in the Bering and Chukchi Seas, which lie between Siberia and Alaska, and eastward along the northern coast of Alaska.
ANIMAL SUMMARY: A mature male Pacific walrus weighs 2,000-3,500 pounds, with females being considerably smaller. The Pacific walrus is larger than the Atlantic walrus, and has considerably larger tusks. Male tusks are nearly straight and may attain a length of as much as 39-40 inches. Female tusks are curved, more slender, and only 60 percent as long as those of the male. The snout of the male Pacific walrus is squarer and the jaw more jutting than in the Atlantic walrus. The nostrils of the Pacific walrus are not visible when viewed from the front, whereas those of the Atlantic walrus are. The Pacific walrus is found in the Bering and Chukchi Seas, which lie between Siberia and Alaska, and eastward along the northern coast of Alaska. The walrus is the only truly marine mammal that is considered big game. Back when it was lawful to hunt Pacific walrus in the Bering Sea (1979 and earlier), it was hunted in the spring when the great herds of males migrated northward with the last of the retreating ice. The hunt was conducted from native villages and guided by skilled native hunters. The hardest part was locating the ice floe where the walrus was resting, then getting there and back again safely. This could entail many miles of rough ocean travel in a small boat, frequently in fog. It was common to spend days in the village waiting for storm waves to abate so boats could venture out. Within the shelter of the ice floes, one encountered a different world from the stormy Bering Sea, with calm water and beautiful ice islands of every shape and size. Walrus are sometimes not too difficult to approach, for their senses are not acute and they tend to be unwary. The selected bull would be stalked as closely as possible, because a brain shot was needed to prevent it from flopping into the water and sinking to the bottom. Hunting for Pacific walrus in Alaska was stopped after 1979 by a jurisdictional dispute between the government of the United States and the state of Alaska that has its roots in the U.S. Marine Mammal Protection Act. This impasse continues, even though it is acknowledged that walrus are very plentiful. A walrus is not needed for a Super Slam®, but those fortunate enough to have taken one before 1979 can count it as an auxiliary trophy.
Super Ten®/Super Slam®: Information found here contains excerpts from the on-line and printed version of Safari Club International (SCI) Record Book of Trophy Animals and is used by permission. Visit www.scirecordbook.org.
Pacific Walrus Range in North America: The map above is used by permission from the on-line Safari Club International (SCI) Record Book of Trophy Animals. Visit www.scirecordbook.org.