Where did the walrus that we know so well today come from? There are some clues that we have uncovered but still plenty that is uncertain. It is believed based upon DNA testing on some early fossils that the walrus is related to early forms of bears. They are also very closely related to seals. The differentiating characteristic is that the walrus grows tusks and seals don’t. Another animal that the walrus could be related to is the Saber Tooth Tiger. This is based on the fact that their tusks and their jaws are so similar.
The early evolution process for the walrus almost didn’t matter because by the 1930’s it was almost extinct. It took almost 50 years of them struggling to evolve with their environment as well as human interactions for them to bring the numbers up high enough for us to believe they would survive.
The truth is that we don’t know too much about the evolution process of the walrus. A great deal of it is nothing but speculation. While some fossils have been found, not nearly enough to give us all of the answers we are looking for. That is why the evolution process of the walrus continues to be one that is highly debated. As many focus their attention on the future of them, others are committed to the challenge of finding out what really took place.
The exact time frame of when the walrus evolved really isn’t’ known. There is only one species of walrus subdivided into three subspecies. Yet many experts believe that there were once more but the others didn’t evolve enough for survival. Only time will tell if those theories are accurate or not.
The fact that scientists believe the walrus lived on tropical regions is surprising to many. It is believed that after they turned to the cold areas to be able to survive.
A big part of the evolution process for the walrus involves their appendages changing into flippers. These flippers allow them to move around in the water with ease in spite of their larger size. The back flipper still has many elements of the earlier times. This includes five digits and the ability to grasp.
So why did the walrus go to the water permanently at that time? The easily could have got food and then went back to the land. Research indicates it was due to the very hot temperatures on land. The walrus needed to be in the bodies of water in order to cool down their bodies. When the Ice Age emerged, they were able to evolve enough to live in the very coldest of areas.
The fact that the walrus has been able to evolve in order to survive for millions of years is fascinating. It goes to show that this is a very strong type of animal as well as one that is highly intelligent. Today they continue to evolve in many ways. For example they are doing their very best to be able to survive in warmer temperatures due mainly to the problem of global warming.
Right now the future looks good for the walrus as long as efforts continue to stop global warming. They have high enough numbers with about 250,000 of them on Earth to ensure they will be around for many more centuries. However, the goal should be well beyond that. By protecting their natural environment and learning all we can about them we can help ensure that their early evolution process wasn’t in vain.