Category: Local Wildlife

A View from the Other Side

By , June 16, 2018

We got a text that morning from Aly, after she’d reached town for work:

“Doggone pain-in-the-butt moose tried to stop me crossing the bay this a.m. It’s on our side of the bay now. Be careful!”

Forewarned, Michelle and I hiked to the bay, she to go to work, me to collect lumber and cat litter I’d staged at the trail head the afternoon before.

Moose on the beach

Aly’s view of the moose from her hiding place behind a beach rock (Photo: Sarah A. Zeiger).

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Nature, Red in Tooth and Claw

By , May 30, 2018

A recent event involving the tour company Michelle and Aly work for, Rainbow Glacier Adventures, compels me to rethink an event from about five years ago.

Apparently, some of the guides stopped along the Haines Highway to join a group of people watching the Chilkat River. A very young moose calf hunkered down on a sand bar, alone.

The people told the guides that they had watched a cow moose give birth to the calf, then leave it on the sand bar, swimming away. As they watched, people driving a large, loud motor home pulled up to see what was going on. At that point, the calf got up and entered the river, eventually swimming to the near shore.

Maybe the crowd gathering during the birthing had frightened the mother moose. Or, this may have been her first calf, and she simply didn’t know what to do. Maybe they reunited on the river bank later? More likely, the calf was abandoned. As a new born, even one that managed to swim across the river, its life expectancy could probably be estimated in hours.

This all seemed familiar to me. Too familiar . . . .

moose calf

The moose calf on a Chilkat River sandbar (Photo: Kim Clune)

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