West Kelowna  

Moose on the loose

When Dave Collie looked out his window Monday morning he saw a very unusual sight.

A moose was hanging about in the yard outside Collie's house on Bayview Court.

"My neighbor phoned me at about 7:00 am and said to look out my window because there was a moose just outside our house."

Collie was able to tip toe about 50 feet away from the moose and snap some photos.

"He decided to lay down for about half an hour.  I went out to see if I could perhaps get a better shot, but he just got up and moved away towards the highway."

Collie says he has lived at his home on Bayview Court for 16 years and has never seen a moose before in that vicinity.

"I've seen lots of deer and a few coyotes, that is all."

Animal Care supervisor of the BC Wildlife Park, Paul Williams says it is very unusual for a moose to be in an urban area.

“Moose do follow river ways as a wildlife corridor because there is a various types of food along creeks and river ways that they enjoy and sometimes that takes them into cities. But it is uncommon.”

According to Williams calves sometimes get turned away from their mothers at this time of year if the mother wants to breed again.

“If they are on their own they may be wandering too far or getting lost.”

Moose generally live in higher altitude areas says Williams not in grass lands or lower areas where cities and towns are found.

“But when food supply is sparse they may come down into valleys to look for food.”

Moose like aquatic vegetation as well as varieties of poplar trees says Williams.

“They like pond vegetation and bogs more so then deer or any other animals."

Williams says it is very possible the moose that was in Collie yard probably wandered up from a river got disorientated and ended up near the roadway.

“It’s not nearly as common to see a moose in your yard as it is a deer but sometimes the ministry or a wildlife officer will get a call about a moose in the city.”

If you find a moose wandering loose in your neighbourhood Williams warns to steer clear.

“Don’t get up close for a picture because being attacked by a moose can be deadly. They can outrun a dog or rear up like a horse and kick with their hoofs.”

Call a conservation officer at 1-877- 356-2029 to report a moose.

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