• A famous walrus named Freya has been attracting crowds as she frolics on the Oslo fjord.
  • However, authorities say they may have to euthanize the animal if people keep approaching her.
  • They worry she may be a danger to people and suspect she's under stress from humans provoking her.

A 1,300-pound walrus beloved for her sunbathing antics in Oslo is now at risk of being euthanized, according to Norwegian authorities, who say she may endanger onlookers ignoring warnings to stay away from her.

Freya the walrus shot to internet stardom in July after people noticed her lounging about leisure boats docked near Oslo, Norway's capital, nearly sinking the vessels as she climbed onto for a spot of sun.

Videos of Freya belly-flopping onto boats, napping, and chasing ducks have earned her a growing online fanbase.

However, Norway's Directorate of Fisheries issued a stern warning on Thursday to crowds gathering in Oslo to interact with her, noting that onlookers have been exhibiting "negligent behavior" and are defying advice to maintain their distance from the animal.

"We are now probing further measures, where euthanasia can be a real alternative," said Nadia Jdaini, the directorate's senior communications advisor, in the statement.

"Our biggest fear is that people could get hurt," Jdaini added.

The directorate said walruses don't usually pose a danger to human beings but may attack people if they feel threatened or don't get enough rest.

Freya is "not necessarily as stocky and clumsy as one might get the impression when she is resting," the organization said.

A veterinarian has already assessed that Freya isn't getting enough rest and that experts have assessed her to be "stressed," the directorate said. 

The body has released over a dozen Freya-related notices this summer, such as "Need peace and quiet" and "Keep your distance from the walrus!"

However, the organization said it's still witnessing children getting up close to Freya near the water and even cases of people trying to sunbathe with her in the fjord.

The directorate said it was also working with the police to enforce safe distances around the walrus.

More on Freya the Walrus

Freya — nicknamed after the Norse goddess of beauty, fertility, and war — is believed to be five years old, according to Norwegian broadcaster TV2.

Walruses have a life expectancy of 40 years, meaning Freya is still young and may have been separated from her mother as a calf, per TV2.

Freya the walrus climbs into a boat in Frognerkilen Bay. Foto: NTB/Trond Reidar Teigen via REUTERS

She was first spotted in Norway around 2019 and has reportedly been sighted several times in the UK, Denmark, Sweden, and the Netherlands, according to the BBC, which cited the Norweigan Broadcasting Corporation.

However, it was only after she arrived in Oslo in July that authorities began noting the risk from people crowding around her.

It's rare to see a lone walrus frolicking about so far south of the Arctic, where walruses typically reside in herds.

Like Freya, another celebrity walrus known as Wally was documented last year clambering aboard boats off the Irish coast and sinking them. Wally appears to have more travel experience under his belt, having swum 2,500 miles along the coast of western Europe to as far as Spain, per the BBC.

Read the original article on Insider