07/26/2012 11:47 am ET

'Talking Walrus': E.T., Point Defiance Zoo Marine Mammal, Turns 30 (VIDEO)

E.T., a walrus and one of the most beloved residents at Washington state's Point Defiance Zoo, is not known for being quiet.

In this video, the "talking walrus," who celebrated his 30th birthday in June, bellows, grunts, gargles and whistles -- yes, whistles -- his way through a popular routine that's earned him fans of all ages.

While there is some controversy about keeping animals in captivity, E.T.'s story is a triumph of conservation and survival. According to the Point Defiance Zoo website, oil workers in Alaska rescued a starving orphan walrus pup in 1982.

The pup, who the workers named E.T. after the title character in Steven Spielberg's hit movie, was raised at the zoo, and 30 years and 2,400 pounds later, grew into the strapping, smart-talking marine mammal he is today.

Walruses are renowned for their intelligence and, not surprisingly, have made appearances in aquarium entertainment shows over the years, performing fitness routines and dancing to Michael Jackson's hits.

Although E.T. has thrived at the zoo, wild walruses are threatened by climate change. The New York Times reported that melting ice might threaten the Pacific walrus population's habitat.

In literature, the most famous talking walrus is probably the loquacious character from Lewis Carroll's poem. While E.T. can't discuss shoes, ships, sealing wax, cabbages or kings, he's definitely got a few amusing things to say.

And here's another talking walrus that had something important to say on HuffPost Green.

Coo coo ca choo.


Baby Hippos!