Moose!

Normally I would not bother making a full blog post to showcase some rather non-remarkable photos, but there is always room for an exception.  Much to my embarrassment, I’ve had to admit many a time to various people that I had never seen a wild moose in person.  Growing up my family did all of our camping between Long Point and Turkey Point on the shores of Lake Erie, so my chances of seeing a moose were pretty much squat. I came closest to seeing a moose last September at the Alfred Bog in Eastern Ontario.  After a day of research I came across a large pile of very fresh scat, but alas, no moose.

Well, I can now happily say that my mooseless state has been erased.  About two weeks ago I was out at one of my study sites with two other students, when we saw a large dark animal climb down the side of an esker.  Instinctively we all thought caribou, but that didn’t really make sense because at this time of year the caribou are all much further north.  The dark colouring and large size of the animal tipped us off that it might be a moose.  We jumped up to grab our binoculars and cameras and promptly lost sight of the animal.  After a quick (15 minute) scramble over the hummocks and up the esker, we relocated our specimen in a riparian area and confirmed its identification as a moose, a young bull moose to be exact.

A young bull moose.

A young bull moose.

A few days after my first moose sighting, I was hiking with another student to a study pond and like usual we were on the lookout for any large animals.  As we approached, the other student pointed out two large brown objects lingering near the opposite shore.  Out came the binoculars, but we were still a bit far to get a good identification.  We got on the radio and let the others in the field know that we were potentially looking at two bears hanging out near our study site.  However we ate our words almost immediately when one of the large brown animals stepped out of the water and onto shore.  The long slender legs and great height of the animal tipped us off that it was not two bears.  We were actually looking at a cow moose and a calf.  So I have officially seen a male, female, and baby moose.  I couldn’t be more pleased!

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