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Alaska Interior moose acting aggressive after winter storm

Published: Jan. 6, 2022 at 4:21 PM AKST
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - After a run of winter storms that blasted Alaska with rain, snow and strong wind, moose in the Interior have begun acting more aggressively towards residents.

According to Tony Hollis, Fairbanks Area Wildlife Biologist for the Department of Fish and Game, the abundance of moose out and about is due to the snowfall that took place across the state.

“The December snowfall was really high,” Hollis explained, “so the moose... this deep snow, has caused moose to not want to be out in the snow. They want to be out on the sidewalks, or hard packed trails or groomed trails where traveling is easier for them.”

Hollis continued, “They don’t want to be in the deep snow, so they’re coming to trails and roads, driveways, people’s front porches, and they don’t want to leave those hard packed places. They don’t want to have to travel into the deep snow, and so if forced to they get aggressive if they get pushed off into the deep snow, or they don’t want to go into the deep snow so they’ll get aggressive to just stay on the hard ground.”

Along with the stress of the snowfall, moose acting more aggressively as they encroach on homes and property is adding concern for residents.

“We have to be patient with the moose,” Hollis remarked. “They’re not going to push real easy, they’ll get aggressive if you push them. So you may have to just wait, be patient, and wait for the moose to leave the area - and it may take some time because they’re not moving around real fast at this point.”

The Department of Fish and Game advises against trying to scare off the massive mammals, as moose tend to respond with hostility according to Hollis. “Hazing moose is difficult. They can be real stubborn, especially when they’re stressed like right now, and their response is to be aggressive when they’re stressed. So trying to haze a moose, push it, may cause that animal to get aggressive, and charge and attack.”

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