February Moose in the Minnesota Woods

I hadn’t had a good moose sighting in quite some time. A couple quick, blurred flashes of black in the distance, but nothing identifiable or photographable. Late February was better though! Here are some photos of a nice, healthy looking yearling bull moose. He and I had a nice standoff and photoshoot before he took off into the newly fallen snow, deeper into the woods. The bull moose will shed their antlers anytime between November and March. Larger, older male moose have likely lost their antlers by early and mid winter, but the youngest moose can hold them into February and March. This was the latest I had personally seen a moose with headgear. February 23rd, 2018. At first, I thought the rack was bigger but it turned out to be it’s ear I was seeing! This is a yearling bull moose and I hope to run into him when he’s older.

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Bull moose in fresh snowfall – Superior National Forest – Feb. 2018

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Doin’ a little dance. Those hooves…
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Yearling bull holding antlers in late February – Minnesota
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Yearling bull moose with antlers in late February – Minnesota

 

Then there was the cow moose… When I saw her, she was standing still with hair raised. She did not stick around long and I was pretty far off in the distance. She ran within seconds of me stopping, running through the deep, new snow. First tracks. I thought she would reappear on the other side of the clearing, so I waited. She looked to be pregnant, and hopefully with twins! She would be about five of eight months along right now. Usually they give birth in May to one, two, and even three!!! calves at times.   About 15 minutes passed when I saw motion in the woods near where the cow went in. She had company, and who knows how long they were on here tail. Hope she is still out there fighting the good fight. Here are a few photos I got right at sunset. night was falling and the wolves didn’t look like they were in a big hurry. Mama was healthy looking.
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What appears to be a pregnant cow moose in Superior National Forest. She should be about 5 months along by now, usually giving birth in May. She had company about 15 minutes behind her.
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Following mother moose by 15 minutes…
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With hair standing up, mother moose had been on the run for a bit. A pack of 3 wolves were close behind.
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Hot pursuit – just 15 minutes after I saw the moose, the wolves moved in.
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Two of the three, sniffing the tracks of the pregnant cow moose as the sun set and night falls…
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And a pine marten just for fun!

2 thoughts on “February Moose in the Minnesota Woods”

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