Why did the cow moose and her calves cross the road? To get to some delicious willow boughs, of course.
That’s what happened this weekend near the bottom of Two Mile Hill, according to Environment Yukon. Officials are urging drivers to be mindful in the area.
On Friday afternoon, conservation officers warned the public that the mother moose, spotted across the road from Integra Tire, appeared to be agitated and should not be approached.
Over the weekend, the moose crossed the road several times, as evident by tracks in the snow and reports by residents.
Conservation officers were called out again this morning to monitor the animals, said Environment Yukon spokesperson Nancy Campbell.
“Because there is a lot of foot traffic up and down the hill, we’re advising people to stay away from it,” she said.
“It’s not as afraid of people as it should be. It’s being very defensive.”
Defensive behaviour means charging, Campbell said, and dog walkers should be mindful of this.
“Dog mushers can also tell you stories about moose stomping,” she added.
Conservation Officer Dave Bakica said the calves are about two-thirds the size of the cow moose, which is approximately 350 kilograms.
“Not something you want to fool around with,” he said.
“I’m not aware of anyone being killed in the Yukon but there have been a few fatalities in Alaska.”
There were reports of a moose and her two calves up near the Kopper King neighborhood about a week ago, Campbell said. These are believed to be the same animals, she said.
The main concern is the moose’s behaviour towards people and their dogs, Bakica said.
Moose may view dogs as wolves and often become overtly aggressive just by a dog’s presence.
In the meantime, drivers should slow down on Two Mile Hill, Campbell said, as there is always a risk of colliding with the moose, or with other drivers watching the animals.
Contact Myles Dolphin at firstname.lastname@example.org