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Rescued Walrus Calf Destined for NY Aquarium

By Catherine Yang
Epoch Times Staff
Created: October 11, 2012 Last Updated: October 11, 2012
Related articles: United States » New York City
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Mitik, rescued walrus calf. (Wildlife Conservation Society)

Mitik, rescued walrus calf. (Wildlife Conservation Society)

NEW YORK—Mitik, a rehabilitating male walrus calf, will arrive at the New York Aquarium next week.

The calf was discovered off the coast of Alaska in July, a week apart from another unrelated orphaned male walrus calf.

Both calves, named Mitik and Pakak, were dehydrated and in poor health when found, and have been receiving care from the Alaska SeaLife Center before relocation to other facilities.

Pakak will move to his new home at the Indianapolis Zoo next week.

Both walruses will continue to receive constant care upon arrival at their new destinations, and are bottle-fed every four hours.

“Mitik has been showing signs of improvement thanks to the dedication and expertise of the Alaska SeaLife Center team, New York Aquarium staff on-site, and the Indianapolis Zoo staff all working together,” said Jon Dohlin, New York Aquarium director.

The aquarium hopes Mitik will be ready to make his debut sometime next year.

Martha Hiatt, supervisor in charge of training and enrichment at New York Aquarium, has been in Alaska interacting with the walrus calves. She said Mitik is active and enjoys interaction with people.

The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), which operates the Bronx Zoo, New York Aquarium, Central Park Zoo, Prospect Park Zoo, and Queens Zoo, hosted a Run for the Wild 5 kilometer run and fun run last weekend in Brooklyn dedicated to saving walruses.

Due to decreasing amounts of ice in the Arctic, more and more walruses have been congregating on land, leading to overcrowding, which could also play a role in spreading disease, according to the WCS.

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