A famous Walrus in Norway was euthanized Sunday because locals and tourists were so arrogant they couldn’t leave the adorable creature alone, despite warnings that such behavior could cause her to be put down.
The walrus affectionately known as “Freya” quickly rose to fame after sunbathing on boats docked near the Oslo Fjord, playing with ducks, and putting on an entertaining spectacle for onlookers, according to Insider. The 1300-pound creature was so enchanting that despite repeated warnings, mesmerized onlookers kept getting too close to the wild animal. Many attempted to take selfies and capture footage with her. This hardly seems like a reason to kill Freya, but that’s exactly what happened. The government felt there was “a chance” Freya would harm someone that got too close, and they cruelly ended her life.
In memory of #Freya – the wandering Walrus that graced us here Shetland last winter.
MURDERED today by the Directorate of Fisheries in #Norway because she was perceived as a “continued threat to human safety”.
Abhorrent and unforgivable on every level. pic.twitter.com/Nu6z1qnIpl
— Hugh Harrop Wildlife (@HughHarrop) August 14, 2022
Nadia Jdaini, the spokesperson for the Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries, had previously issued stern warnings about the potential fate of the animal. “The public has disregarded the current recommendation to keep a clear distance to the walrus,” Jdaini said to CNN.
Sadly, people just couldn’t resist the adorable antics of this sweet walrus, and instead of appreciating her from a distance, they selfishly kept interacting with her.
Many argue that it would have seemed more logical to move the walrus to her natural habitat and relocate her further from Oslo, but that didn’t seem to be a valid option for officials, who decided instead to murder the perfectly healthy animal.
Frank Bakke-Jensen, the director general at the Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries, announced Freya was euthanized because officials deemed her to be a public risk, according to TMZ.
“The decision to euthanize the walrus was made based on an overall assessment of the continued threat to human safety,” Bakke-Jensen said, according to TMZ. (RELATED: BARR: If Non-Human Animals Are Granted Human Rights, Will They Be Allowed To Vote?)
— New York Post (@nypost) August 15, 2022
This sparked outrage online, as many of Freya’s fans and followers lashed out against her unnecessary death. They reminded officials that she had not harmed anyone and that options other than euthanasia could have been pursued.
“We have sympathies for the fact that the decision can cause reactions with the public, but I am firm that this was the right call,” Bakke-Jensen said, according to CNN. “We have great regard for animal welfare, but human life and safety must take precedence.”
Freya will forever be missed by all those who were fortunate enough to engage in this close encounter with the animal.