TRITON, NL - Tyson Winsor from Triton and Corrie Ryan from Roberts Arm had an unusual encounter during a skidoo trip April 7-8 -- they found a moose in a snowbank.
“We were just out on a skidoo ride, with no plans of where we were going, and happened to come upon the moose,” Winsor said. “We were on Southern Lake Access Road when we found the moose, which is over by Leading Tickles area.”
The moose had worn itself down trying to get out of the snowbank. Winsor and Ryan helped move the rest of the snow out of its way, but the moose didn’t get very far.
The men were concerned that hunger was contributing to the moose’s struggles, so they fed it with an alder branch from a nearby tree and with some of their own provisions.
“Corrie fed him molasses bread, hoping it would give him energy, while telling the moose it would make him feel better and full of energy because it was full of sugar,” Winsor said.
Most people would find it unnerving to get close enough to feed such a large animal, but Winsor and Ryan were quite calm about it.
“It wasn’t intimidating at all,” Winsor said. “We were just cautious at first, to not get too close until we knew the moose wasn’t going to charge.”
After spending some time with the moose, including taking a few photos, Ryan and Winsor moved on, hoping the moose would recover the rest of the way on its own. Unfortunately, according to another friend’s report, the moose later perished.
Despite the sad outcome, Winsor said he and Ryan would do the same thing again.
“We would definitely do it again. Hopefully the moose would survive to help our moose population sustain (itself) from being brought down from all the coyotes and anything else that bring them down in number,” he said.
While the desire to help an animal in difficulty is understandable, the Department of Fisheries and Land Resources advised in a statement to The Nor’Wester that they recommend leaving rescue attempts to trained conservation officers.
“It is important to note that anyone attempting to aid a moose or other young animal puts themselves and the animal in considerable danger,” read the statement. “Reports of injured animals or animals in distress should be reported to the nearest Forestry and Wildlife district office so that a conservation officer trained in wildlife control can respond.”