[A previous owner of the publication in front of me has added a note suggesting the author meant to title this “Sea-Elephant, or Walrus”.]
IT was a difficult point, with us, to decide where to place this amphibious quadruped, since he lives with equal ease, in the depth of the seas, and on land; he is a link between the inhabitants of the water and the animals who feed on the shores, and may be considered as belonging to both in the uninterrupted chain of natural beings. The Walrus, improperly denominated “Sea-horse,” is of a very considerable size, being sometimes eighteen feet in length and twelve in circumference at the thickest part. He has two large tusks in the upper jaw; they are inverted, the points nearly uniting, and sometimes exceed twenty four inches in length; the use which the animal makes of them, is not easily explained, unless they help him to climb up the mountains of ice, amongst which he takes his abode, as the parrot employs his beak to get upon his perch. However they are equal for durability and whiteness to those of the elephant, and, keeping their colour much longer, are preferred by dentists, to repair, in the mouth of the fair, what age or accidents have destroyed.
The Walrus is common in some of the northern seas, and often attacks a boat full of men. He is a gregarious animal, and shows a great deal of boldness and intrepidity when wounded. They are often found in herds, sleeping and snoring on the icy shores, and when alarmed they precipitate themselves into the water with great bustle and trepidation. They feed on shell fish and sea weeds, and yield a sort of oil equal in goodness to that of the whale.