So today is one of those days in which I am even more grateful than usual to live in the north. It's not even like I live in a little village. Fort St. John is a city of 18,000 people and probably up to 25,000 in the winter months when the oil patch is booming. We have a Starbucks, Tim Horton's, we are by no means rural. However, every year without fail, some poor Moose gets lost and wanders into town. Today it was a young cow. Or so I'm told. Apparently the males have not lost their antlers yet and this one did not have antlers. So there I am at work this morning and all of a sudden someone says to look out the window. The building across the street has a yard that is fenced in, with a gate. Apparently, Stella, as we decided to call her, had jumped the fence the night before. There was a large amount of snow built up around the outside of the fence but on the inside, there was not as much snow and she couldn't get out. Now I have to say that the deep South has nothing on the redneck here. The guys who owned the yard tried to "help" Stella out by scaring her with a bulldozer and when that didn't do anything, they started throwing snowballs at her to get her to move. Epic fail. They didn't even get near her (thankfully) and she went to sleep in the corner of the yard. After a few hours of moving the snow around with the Cat, they decided to build it up around the fence in hopes that she would jump it again to get out. Go boys! However, the snow was too soft and she didn't seem to know what they were getting at so that didn't work either. Finally, they opened the gate and after chasing her with the truck she ran out of the yard and into the nearby bush. During all of this, you'd think they would have called the Conservation Officer but you know guys and their machines. They figured they would be able to handle it. Oh, the drama. After all is said and done, I feel as though I should have called the Conservation Office but I didn't know exactly what was going on when it was happening as I was working (or trying to). If I had witnessed the snowballs and the rest of it, I would have called. Poor thing. Moose are my favourite wild animals. They lope along kind of gracefully but they look so akward that they are endearing. I'm happy that when people think of Canadians, they think of Moose. If you live where I do, chances are you have seen at least one herd of moose before you can talk.So as an ode to Stella, I have found some pics of other lovely moose for you.
A full grown moose is huge. An adult male can stand 7 feet tall at the shoulder and weigh up to 1800 pounds. They can become agressive when they are provoked or scared by a dog or other animal. Usually they try to stomp these things to death. Moose have been know to charge at people too but for the most part, if you keep your distance, they won't do anything. Since they are herbivores, they don't want us for food! So there you have it. My day and a lesson on moose. I hope to post some pics of my art journal soon so keep an eye out!