The walruses start coming onshore in April as Alaska’s ocean ice begins to melt. They “haul out” to the beaches at Bristol Bay and Round Island and stay there until August, groaning, eating, and occasionally masturbating (yes, this is something walruses do, using either their flippers, or, more ingeniously, their mouths).
We didn’t see any self-oral when we were watching Explore.org’s new Walrus Cam, but that’s not to take away from the viewing experience. Watching thousands of walruses lolling on a beach is fascinating and, let’s be honest, also quite humorous. The giant blubbery things roll over each other, argue about personal space, and make the deepest sort of barking sounds. It’ll keep you hooked for a good few minutes, perhaps even longer.
Explore.org, founded by explorer and philanthropist Charlie Annenberg Weingarten, gave a grant to Alaska’s Department of Fish and Game to run four remote cameras. The department had a previous webcam set up in 2005, but had to close it for lack of funds. The grant also helps keep two state rangers nearby who shoo away boats and planes that might disturb the animals and cause them to flee.
Up to 2,000 walruses arrive at Round Island alone each day, according to Explore.org. See them in all their waddling glory here.