wal·​rus | \ ˈwȯl-rəs How to pronounce walrus (audio) , ˈwäl- \
plural walrus or walruses

Definition of walrus

: a large gregarious marine mammal (Odobenus rosmarus of the family Odobenidae) of arctic waters related to the seals that has limbs modified into webbed flippers, long ivory tusks, a tough wrinkled hide, stiff whiskers, and a thick layer of blubber

Note: The male walrus may reach a weight of over 3700 pounds (1678 kilograms). Walrus typically inhabit moving pack ice and usually feed on organisms (such as clams and mussels) living on or near the ocean's bottom. Walrus of the northern Atlantic are considered a separate subspecies (Odobenus rosmarus rosmarus) from the somewhat larger northern Pacific walrus (Odobenus rosmarus divergens).

Examples of walrus in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web So too is the Old Ebbitt Grill at 675 15th Street, N.W., a walrus platter throw from the new un-scalable fencing going up. Jamie Mcintyre, Washington Examiner, "As nation votes, the Pentagon awaits new marching orders," 3 Nov. 2020 Whale and walrus are among the primary stocks harvested for food; the nearest hospital is more than 100 miles away in Nome. Washington Post, "Covid had spared Alaska’s most remote villages. Not anymore.," 30 Oct. 2020 For a complete rundown of current B&C world-record animals, from American elk to Atlantic walrus, check out the B&C World’s Record Gallery here. Scott Bestul, Field & Stream, "The 10 Biggest World Record Elk," 7 Aug. 2020 The Sienna doesn’t handle like a walrus anymore, flipping and flopping around winding roads. cleveland, "Toyota Sienna AWD: It’s all the SUV most of us need," 7 Mar. 2020 No walruses were harmed, according to the Northern Fleet. Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "Walrus attacks Russian Navy, sinking inflatable boat," 23 Sep. 2019 The flora and fauna are out of fairy tales: polar bears, arctic foxes, reindeer, walruses, purple saxifrage, dwarf willow, psychedelic orange lichen. BostonGlobe.com, "In Norway, so much beauty — 24 hours a day — and fear of its demise - The Boston Globe," 26 Sep. 2019 The walrus forgets about her bottle, her zookeeper, the strangers watching her. Gabrielle Russon, orlandosentinel.com, "SeaWorld’s baby walrus is learning how to swim without mom’s help," 18 Jan. 2019 The owner of a downtown Anchorage gallery that peddles historical curiosities has been charged with illegally trafficking walrus tusk ivory and tax evasion, according to a statement Thursday from federal prosecutors. Emily Goodykoontz, Anchorage Daily News, "Anchorage gallery owner charged with illegally buying and selling walrus ivory, tax evasion," 23 Apr. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'walrus.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of walrus

1728, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for walrus

Dutch, of Scandinavian origin; akin to Danish & Norwegian hvalros walrus, Old Norse rosmhvalr

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about walrus

Statistics for walrus

Cite this Entry

“Walrus.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/walrus. Accessed 2 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for walrus



English Language Learners Definition of walrus

: a large animal that lives on land and in the sea in northern regions and that has flippers and long tusks


wal·​rus | \ ˈwȯl-rəs How to pronounce walrus (audio) \

Kids Definition of walrus

: a large animal of northern seas that is related to the seal and has long ivory tusks, a tough wrinkled hide, and flippers used in swimming, diving, and moving about on land

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on walrus

Nglish: Translation of walrus for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of walrus for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about walrus

Comments on walrus

What made you want to look up walrus? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

February 2021 Words of the Day Quiz

  • squirrel in winter
  • Which is a synonym of perdure?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!