Archive | 6:49 AM

Moose! And Not the Dessert.

11 Jun

I saw one–in person and very close-up!!!

moose 1

The scene:  I’m house-sitting north of the city, near a river and recreation area.  The dog needs to play fetch 24/7.  But when she gets tired she runs to the throw-rope and lies down to rest.  So a plot–throw the toy during commercials, then while the dog rests, watch the show.  And so on and so fourth–watch the show, throw during commercials.  All hour, all day, all week.

moose 3

It’s 6 PM on a warm and sunny day.  The show is on and I’m inside watching it, the dog outside resting.  I hear a bark.  But the neighbors are out working the horses in the round pens.  It was sort of a yapping bark, so I think the dog sees the neighbors (she’s been yapping at them all week as they come and go) so I get up calling to her to come chase her throw-rope.  She does not come to the deck, and when I get to the door, the first thing I see is the horses.  They were all standing at attention, ears funny, and alarmed looks on their faces.  Uh-oh, this was no yapping bark.  I look in the direction the horses are all looking–and there, right on the edge of the lawn–a MOOSE!

And the dog is less than 8 feet away, barking aggressively.  Knowing that moose can be young moose 1unpredictable at best, dangerous and lethal at worst, I call the dog back.  Her hackles are 6 inches high, and she won’t relent.  I’m scared–it would suck if the dog was hurt/killed.  I start shouting at the dog.  Still, she barks at the moose.  The moose looks dazed and is just standing on the edge of the lawn.  I start cussing the dog, hoping she will be called-back.  Finally, she runs to the deck.  I put her in the house, and grab my phone to take a picture.

yearling mooseBy this time the neighbor is in the backyard near the moose taking pictures, and the moose has moved into the wooded part of the yard.  The picture is far, but the moose well-centered.  I take 2 pics.  Unfortunately, even with all the editing tricks I know, I can’t even SEE the moose.  Not at all–I think the way the light was, and due to the crummy camera phone, it photographed white.  But it was cool all the same.

According to a really detailed moose-enthusiast site,

moose 2 (2)

What makes a moose different and interesting:
-lgst member of the deer family
-legs over 100 cm longmoose 5
-the hair is 10-25 cm long
-their toes are about 18 cm long
-distance between toes is 11-12 cm
-moose have dew claws
-steps can be 350 m apart when jumping!
-their feet contain 2 types of glands, one of which secretes pharmones
-average weight is 500 kg
moose 2-A moose weighs about 4x more than a quarter horse

-the average male moose (bull) needs to consume 9770 calories (apporx 71 pounds) per day to maintain its weight (Wiki).

-length can be 350 mmoose
-height is usually 2 m
-in captivity, moose can live 27 years
-in the wild, the oldest moose is 22 years old
-the teeth have rings for each year of life
-Moose cannot detect a motionless object w/their eyes alone.
-the large ears can detect sounds 16-21,000 Hz!!!
-A moose can smell an area of 800 cm^2
-Moose have 200x more sensory receptors in the nasal cavity than humans and 4x more than dogs–Wow!
moose 6