Early this morning I was about to take one of my dogs out when I looked out the glass doors and saw a baby moose in my yard. Otherwise known as a mooselet. Seriously, that’s what a baby is called. A male is called a bull. A female is called a cow. And a baby is called a mooselet. A mooselet… aww, how cute!
Her head spun toward me, but she didn’t move. She didn’t freeze, either, which I thought was odd. Her big ears sprung straight up and she glared at me. But there was also an innocence to her. She was clearly a baby or young adolescent. I pray some hunter didn’t kill her mother. But, sadly, it is a real possibility.
My mind drifted back to a news story about moose in this area. Moose in New Hampshire are becoming so infected with ticks that they are actually being sucked dry. Thousands of ticks sucking your blood can not feel good. So many ticks they actually can bring down a six or seven hundred pound moose! The poor moose. I feel terrible for them. I don’t understand why we can spray for ticks from airplanes, like we do for the damn mosquitos. Why do our moose have to die? Especially this way. They are such majestic animals.
Anyway, back to my story.
I stared at the moose and the moose stared back. Locked in a battle of wills. Okay, maybe that’s a touch dramatic. I’m a storyteller, a fiction writer, you can’t blame me for wanting to enhance the story. It’s in my nature.
Okay, back to it…
My heart thundered in my chest. Okay, okay, it pitter-pattered, at most. At the same time I was in awe of her. At first I didn’t know what she was. A deer, a moose, a combination of the two?
As we eyed each other up-and-down I realized she was in fact a baby moose, or a very small cow (female). Her tail hung down, her muzzle (Is it called a muzzle on a moose?) was peanut-shell-shaped, and she had big ears. These are all common descriptions for a moose, not a deer. Well, maybe not the peanut-shell-shaped muzzle. That’s mine. But it DOES look like a peanut shell when you think about it. Am I right?
My heart melted as I gazed at this breathtaking animal. Ever since we moved to the Upper Valley of New Hampshire I’ve wanted to see two things.
1. A moose– top of my list. I meant a large bull moose, but she satisfied my wishlist… for now.
2. A bear– running a close second.
I saw my bear a few weeks back. If you missed that post you can find it here. And it was awesome! It was everything I thought it would be– and more!
Today, I’m on top of the world! The moose gave me time to retrieve my cellphone, turn it on– because I hadn’t yet turned it on for the day– aim and shoot. I couldn’t believe it. She actually waited for me.
One thing I noticed about the moose that I found interesting, was this…
When I fist spotted her I was about to walk out the glass doors on to my deck. The moose didn’t budge. Instead, she turned to me. These are not animals who spook easily. If anything, they are up for a fight at a moments notice. Thankfully I was aware of this already, so I didn’t leave my sun room until she was galloping away. But it got me thinking. If ever, you, me, or anyone else ever come across a moose in the wild… here’s my advice:
1. Do not approach the moose. No matter how cute you think they are.
2. Stand very still. No sudden movements.
3. Do not whip out your camera and start snapping photographs, unless you are a safe distance away. Keep in mind these are not slow animals. They DO and WILL charge, if provoked. Their version of this might be skewed, too. If they think you are a threat– you are. Whether you simply want a closer look, or are minding your own business. It’s what goes through their mind that matters. Which is not necessarily the truth.
4. If he or she starts coming at you? The experts say not to run. Come on! If I saw a six hundred pound moose charging straight at me, I certainly wouldn’t just stand there. So, on this one, I have no advice. Let’s just hope it never happens.
I only wish you could see what I saw. These pictures don’t do her justice. I saw her chocolate-brown eyes, her blackish fuzzy ears, her wet nose, small details on her coat and her blackish-brown tail. I really should invest in a good camera.
I’m curious what shots you’ve taken of wildlife. I’d love to see them, if you want to share them. Leave me a link in the comments.
Have a great day, folks! Take some time today to appreciate the wondrous things life has to offer. The things money can’t buy. Like my moose.