About The Maine Moose (Alces alces)
Moose roam in abundance in Maine. they are THE largest wild animal in all of North America; adults weighing an average of 1000 pounds and 6-feet in height at the shoulders. Moose possess very keen senses
of smell and hearing. But, they are near-sighted. Their front
legs are longer than their hind legs, and this allows them to jump over
the many fallen trees, slash, and other debris they encounter in the wild. Like Deer, Moose lack
a set of upper incisors. This requires them to strip off "browse"
and bark. Male bulls and female cows have different coloration patterns as well. Bulls
have a dark brown or black muzzle, while a cow's face is light
brown. Cows also have a white patch of fur just beneath their
Only bulls grow antlers. Antler growth begins in March or April
and is completed by August or September when the velvet on them is shed.
Antlers begin to drop beginning in December - but some young bulls may retain
their antlers into early spring. While yearlings develop a spike or
fork; adults develop full antlers - with
wide sweeping palms along with many long tines - that can weigh over 60 pounds. The bell (the flap of
skin and long hair that hangs from the throat), is more pronounced
in adult bulls than in cows or immature bulls.
WHERE TO SEE MOOSE
Cows (female moose) prefer to keep their calves near water as
an escape route. Ponds are used by both sexes to escape from moose
flies and other pesky insects. "Moose wallows" form
in regularly wet areas on the side of roads where road salt accumulates.
Moose visit these areas to drink, and satisfy their salt requirements.
WHEN TO SEE MOOSE
Moose are most active in the early morning and early evening hours.
Just before sunset moose will roam in search of saplings or salt.
Moose are vegetarians and often seek out the young saplings.
If you do see one or more moose, use a zoom or telephoto lens to bring the
creature "up close". Do not try and walk up close to a moose. They are generally peaceful animals, but can be unpredictable - especially in the Fall!