ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The Alaska SeaLife Center has decided to house two rescued male Pacific walrus calves together, after they were found stranded near Barrow in July and separately received intensive care at the center.
In a Thursday press release, the center says the calves -- nicknamed Pakak and Mitik by staff -- arrived in Seward on July 22 and July 30 respectively, but center veterinarian Dr. Carrie Goertz decided last week that they could be housed together.
“In the previous week, (Mitik) made huge strides towards overcoming various complications and began to suckle from a bottle,” Goertz said. “Walrus are very social animals, and joint housing will enable the walrus to learn to socialize together and provide companionship to each other.”
Pakak, the name given to the older calf, means “one that gets into everything” in Inupiaq -- a name he received after fishermen reported that he was getting into their nets. Mitik was named by the daughter of one of his initial rescuers, who helped care for him in Barrow.