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forestgnome
12-16-2005, 08:41 AM
Question for moose experts...

I saw this cow moose yesterday, took a shot from about 300 yards, tracked her for awhile but never saw her again. There were spots of blood in her track, and she's sporting quite a belly. Any thoughts?

Chip
12-16-2005, 09:06 AM
Moose generally give birth in May or June, giving enough time for the babies to toughen up before winter. So the chances of it being pregnant are slim.
It's most likely injured or wounded.

Waumbek
12-16-2005, 10:08 AM
Moose generally give birth in May or June, giving enough time for the babies to toughen up before winter. So the chances of it being pregnant are slim.
It's most likely injured or wounded.

I'm afraid I agree. In the post-moose hunt season, it may be a gunshot wound. Or, more likely, a car collision. Many moose apparently walk away from the scenes of accidents with cars but may still be injured and die later. Or, it could be a parasite infestation, enteric torsion (if that happens to moose the way it happens to dogs), etc.

forestgnome
12-16-2005, 04:43 PM
Yuk.

I spoke to a retired ranger today who thought it was too early for a cow to be showing a pregnant belly, and that the blood would not signify reproduction stuff.

The blood spots were not at all profuse, only a couple small drops, and they were directly in the hoof print, so maybe she just stepped on a thorn, which are very plentiful in the area.

forestgnome
03-07-2006, 06:23 PM
Okay, I was tracking another bleeding moose in the Sandwich Range on Sunday. There was a lot of blood. I determined it was the front, right hoof that was bleeding. There was no blood in the other prints, or anywhere else outside of the front, right hoof print. I suspect they commonly gash their feet.

Also, I found more than 30 moose beds and not a single tick! Is the tick infestation on the decline?

Chip
03-07-2006, 07:50 PM
That would be a more pleasant diagnosis than our original, for sure. Unfortunately when you google "moose blood trail" all you get is hunting reports.
I suppose they might step on things or gash their own legs accidentally often enough. Don't know about the ticks, except that the populations expand and contract together.
Hopefully this isn't a bad sign for the moose population.

el-bagr
03-08-2006, 11:46 AM
I've seen moose and whitetail with bleeding shins on their forelegs from postholing through ice crusts. Heck, I've cut my shins from the same -- in fact I have a loose bit of bone on one shin that I swear came from senseless trailbreaking through a 3/4" ice crust years ago.

As I was doing a bit of bushwhacking yesterday, I was thinking about ticks as well. The way I've heard it, tick populations decline when there is (1) a cold winter (2) without much snow. Sounds plausible to me -- greater mortality for subnivean hosts and phases without the snow cover.

sierra
03-08-2006, 05:18 PM
I know one thing, ticks are not in decline in southern NH, my poor dog has had a bunch during the few warm spells we have had this year. Thankfully we are spending the summer in the CO rockies where ticks are not an issue.