Meet Freya, the adorable 600kg walrus capturing hearts and sinking boats in Europe

  • Freya the walrus is causing chaos as she damages boats in her hunt for sunbathing spots
  • The 600kg marine mammal is named after the Norse goddess of love and beauty
Tribune News Service |

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Freya clambers aboard a boat in Frognerkilen bay, in Oslo, Norway. Photo: NTB via Reuters

A 600 kg (1,300 pound) walrus in northern Europe has taken up summer sunbathing on boats and some of them – well, are just too small for the big gal.

Nicknamed Freya, the young female walrus is causing cute, clumsy chaos in countries including the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden, locals report.

Most recently, the marine mammal swam to Norway, The Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries reported, where she sunk a boat in Oslofjord, an inlet in the southeastern part of the country. No injuries were reported.

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Named after the Norse goddess of love and beauty, Freya has fans, but she also has mariner enemies after sinking and damaging boats.

Viral video posted online shows Freya climbing into the stern of boats, basking in the sun, struggling to support her bulk, and other times flipping the vessels. When she is not dozing on boats, other video shows her chasing ducks and swans.

A walrus can sleep about 19 hours a day, according to the Center for Sleep Research at UCLA.

Freya out for a swim in Frognerkilen bay, in Oslo, Norway. Photo: NTB/Reuters

The Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries released a statement online asking people to leave the walrus alone.

“She is a wild animal of around 600kg, which is not necessarily as stalky and clumsy as one might get the impression,” the statement reads. “She is doing well, feeding, resting and seems to be in good condition.”

“We are continuing our observation work to gain knowledge about grazing and resting patterns,” the agency wrote. “The best thing is if nature takes its course and she has moved away from areas with a lot of people. In any case, we are prepared if she were to cause problems elsewhere.”

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The Directorate of Fisheries reported this week that it was considering relocating Freya.

“We are in contact with professionals, including at the Institute of Marine Research, to find out how this can be done. We have not finished working out the details. More information will be provided when any moving process has been decided.”

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