A Russian navy vessel recently sank during an Arctic expedition and no it was not sabotaged. It was sunk by a walrus after the navy vessel ended up getting too close to the female animal’s cub. The Northern Fleet along with Russian Geographical Society was sailing off Franz Josef Land on the Altai tug vessel. However, they were making use of smaller dinghies for going to shore.
Sailors had to abandon one of the ships when a female walrus attacked the inflatable vessel. The Geographical Society reported that the vessel was sunk. However, the Kremlin’s Defense Ministry didn’t include this detail in the report that was published on September 18. The report put forward by the Geographical Society said, ‘’She probably did it, fearing for her cubs. The boat sank, but the tragedy was avoided thanks to the clear actions of the squad leader. All the landing participants safely reached the shore.’
However, the Russian military version simply states that the walrus attacked and that ‘serious troubles were avoided thanks to the clear and well-coordinated actions of the Northern Fleet servicemen, who were able to take the boat away from the animals without harming them.’ The researchers may have been attempting to fly a drone too close that might have ended up spooking the walrus, The Barents Observer reports.
The Russian Navy and the Geographical Society were busy carrying out an expedition that was retracing the steps of Austro-Hungarian explorer Julius von Payer who is credited with the discovery of the archipelago in 1873 that was named after Emperor Franz Joseph I.
The Geographical Society has previously also reported the various dangers that are present in the Arctic. These dangers are categorized as predators and harsh cold conditions. Walrus can become quite aggressive when threatened, and their capability of capsizing boats is not a new phenomenon. It has been well-documented in the literature pertinent to expeditions. The average female walrus can weigh more than two thousand pounds and is about twice as much as a grand piano.