Saturday, December 8, 2012

December 7, 2012 More moose!

As mentioned, here is the photo of me on March 28, 2008....petting a moose, who would have soon been 1 year old, had she lived that long.  She was covered in ticks and her front quarters are bare.
Up close and personal here....poor moose with way too many ticks.  Anyway, and I wouldn't recommend this to anyone, I actually had kneeled down along side her and was rubbing her nose.  She made some quiet noises that made me think if it was a cat, she would be purring.  I think it was comforting to have a being by her that was non-threatening when she was so weak she couldn't even stand any more.  If she could, I obviously wouldn't have been doing this.  I stopped several times over the course of the day to check on her.  I was so worried the wolves were going to come and eat her bite by bite while she was alive and unable to defend herself and run away.  She died the next day.
So, not all stories have happy endings. 
You don't have to be hunting to be quiet in the woods.  I spend a lot of time just walking with my dog.  Casey, at this point, was my constant companion and a wonderful partner he was.  He was always on the alert for a partridge, season or not.  But, this spring we had a different surprise.  I was walking along a deer trail around the edge of a cut over area, hoping to find some deer sheds.  It was a great morning for a walk and outside of some fiddleheads, I hadn't found anything too exciting.  Then I came to a spot where the trail was stamped and flattened smooth and nearby, a lot of fresh moose droppings.  I just stopped and was looking around and all of a sudden, right in front of me ten feet away I saw a newborn moose calf.  The legs were all folded under it and head and ears were flat on the ground.  It was hiding in the opening.  I quickly grabbed Casey and started looking around.  "Mom" was no where to be seen; so, I assumed she was where I wanted to go....and promptly changed my mind.  I took a couple of steps closer to check out baby while thinking - CUTE!  Then, brain kicked back in and said SCRAM!  Mom would not be appreciative of me and Casey admiring her baby.  As I was leaving, I looked over my shoulder and the baby moose had head and ears up watching us leave.  Another wonderful adventure.
One more...with Casey.  We were out on a winter ski trail.  There had been the odd deer tracks and weasel tracks .....rather uneventful ski trip around the trails for us.  All of a sudden, just as I was to come down the hill onto the old field, there were fresh moose tracks.  Casey was checking them and I was thinking.......hmmmm.......  Casey was leading as he usually does  Then, he was barking!  Oh no....coming full bore down the hill, I didn't want to see what I was seeing.  A moose.....right at the bottom of the hill where I'd turn the corner and be on my way home......a very mad moose at present, with ears laid back and stomping one front foot.  I had wiped out on that corner where the moose was standing the day before.  I called Casey and tucked in behind an alder clump and checked my ski boots - frozen in!  Oh sh#t.....the messes we can get in to.  Well, Mizz Moose just decided maybe she didn't want to get off the trail in the deep snow; but, she didn't like Casey much either.  She finally took a couple of steps off to the side on an old game trail that follows the edge of the field.  I came out of the alder and said to Casey, "Let's go!"  And, go we did!  I could have poked her with my ski pole as I went by.  But, another morning of excitement was ending safely. 

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