Monday, May 25, 2009

Exciting Sightings

After nearly 20 years at the cottage without seeing a single moose, this spring has brought two sightings in two consecutive weekends and I am in moose heaven.

Last weekend, my sister, her husband, my niece and her husband came for dinner. I was sitting at the end of the table facing the driveway. Just as we were finishing our meal, I looked up to see a moose running down the road past the end of our driveway.

We raced from the table and arrived outside to see a very confused young moose trotting down the road, being herded by someone in a small silver SUV.
Not sure why they thought this was a good idea, but after a brief conversation, we learned that the youngster had come onto the road near the portage between our lake and the one across the road, which was in the opposite direction to which he was moving. (After looking at as many pictures as I could find, I think it was a young male, about a year old.)

We managed to get him turned around and headed back the way he came from. And also managed to get him on a side road off the main one, which made me relax a bit. We decided to head back to the cottage and leave him alone. After all, it was the Victoria Day weekend and between too many people, cars and fireworks, I'm sure this little guy was totally freaked out. We left him in the woods, hoping he would not return to the road.

(This picture is not our moose - in fact, I believe this is an older female, but her coat is about the same as the young one we saw, and I loved this picture, which I'm sure will be reference for future projects.)

I swear there were a couple of times I could have reached out and touched him. He was about the same height as me and have a very scraggly greyish coat with very long hair around the withers and head (another reason why I think he was a young one). It was very exciting indeed!!

Then this past Friday night, as we were heading in from the highway, Rick saw another moose in the woods. It turned out to be a much-older male with a medium rack of antlers. We stopped the car to stare at him. He stopped and stared at us. We both held positions for a good 3 minutes and then we headed off slowly so as not to frighten him. Again, he was much too close to the road for my liking. I think the black flies are particularly bad this year and we've been told the bugs drive them out of the woods, which unfortunately often puts them in danger.

Both sighting were at about 9:30 at night, which according to my research is when they are active. That is also when the bugs are active, so it makes sense that they come out of the woods at that time to escape.

As exciting as both these sightings wee, it makes me wish they would stay deep in the woods and be safe. But they were both magnificent animals and have been an inspiration for my next piece, which I have already designed.

This blog is not called the rugged moose for no good reason.

1 comment:

Julie said...

Hi Wendi

Back in NL from the vacation/shopping trip. I loved your story about moose. Of course, we see them all the time here.

That young moose was confused as it is this time of year that their mothers drive them away. To be on their own and to prepare for the next one. This is the most dangerous time in NL as there are so many young ones puzzled and scared without their mothers.They often walk too close to the highways and get hurt.

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