In December 2022, a wandering walrus, lovingly nicknamed Thor, was spotted on the south coast of England. Now, he has resurfaced once more in eastern Iceland.
Thor the Walrus delighted locals on the south coast of England around Christmastime in 2022 when he was discovered around Southampton, Scarborough, and Blyth.
Photographs of the mighty creature sleeping on a pier in Scarborough on New Year’s Eve in 2022 circulated in what became one of the rarest UK wildlife sightings.
The young Atlantic walrus has caught the attention of many around the world as he wanders from place to place, brightening the days of locals wherever he lands.
Thor the Walrus – a welcome face has resurfaced once more
Thor has been spotted in several locations in the UK recently, including a pier in Scarborough and the beach by Calshot Castle in Hampshire around Christmas 2022.
In fact, the Scarborough New Year’s Eve fireworks display was cancelled upon his visit so as not to distress the animal.
Before that, there were sightings of the mighty creature in France and the Netherlands. Now, Thor is continuing his European tour as he has been spotted in Iceland.
Right after Thor was discovered in Iceland, another massive Walrus was spotted having a rest on rocks off the Inner Hebrides in Scotland by a local fisherman.
Thor takes Iceland – delighted to see him again
Thor was able to be properly identified in Iceland thanks to his markings. The British Divers Marine Life Rescue were able to confirm this. He was discovered in Breiðdalsvík, a fishing town in the eastern region of Iceland.
The famous face seems to have travelled from Blyth to Breiðdalsvík, approximately 1360 km (845 miles). According to RUV News, Thor has settled on a pontoon in the town’s harbour with crowds gathering.
A British Divers Marine Life Rescue spokesman said, “We are delighted to have been informed that he is in Iceland… After Thor’s visit to the UK, we wondered if we would ever see him again”.
Walrus sightings – how and why do they get to where they’re going?
Walrus sightings in the UK are extremely rare, with around 27 being spotted over the last 130 years. Freya, Wally, and Thor are the most recent guests, all being sighted since 2021.
But why do walruses come so far to the UK? While we can’t be exactly sure, their presence could be down to a number of factors.
Walrus hunters have kept their numbers down, which could contribute to more regular sightings. Plus, the melting of sea ice in their native Arctic will result in shifts in their movements.
Freya the Walrus came to an unfortunate end after being deemed a risk to the public by Norwegian authorities.
Something many people believe could have been avoided, it is advised to steer clear of any walruses you might spot on your local piers and beaches to avoid the risk of harm to yourself or the marine mammal.