Sea Ice plays an important role in walrus life. Simply seawater that has frozen, sea ice provides much needed transportation aid to the superiorly lazy walruses. There are several different types of sea ice, listed below:
- Fast Ice = Ice frozen along the coastline/fastened to the coast.
- Drift Ice = chunks of ice (any size) that drift with ocean currents. This particular type of sea ice is most often used by walruses for travel.
- Pack Ice = drift ice that has been packed together.
- Pancake Ice = sea ice that has broken into chunks that look like pancakes.
- Ice Floe = a piece of ice less than six miles in dimension.
- Ice Fields = a piece of ice greater then six miles in dimension.
Walruses use sea ice mostly as a means of transportation, but the females also birth and nurse calves on ice floes. These birthing floes are usually far away from the group, to avoid the ruckus and wild males of the herd. The sea ice is usually pretty steep, which is why the walrus have those big tusks. The tusks are used to heave the walrus onto the ice. This is where the walruses name comes from. Odobenus literally means "toothwalker".