“That’s a troll face if I ever saw one”
Photos from last week: …a misguided cigarette sparked a bark fire outside the Manito Tap House. While some crews battled brush fires in northwest Spokane, another crew responded Sunday evening to the very small fire and were able to wash it out quickly. Made for a cute photo opportunity outside the South Hill pub.
…a weird art project showed up along Riverside and Lincoln on Thursday morning. To recreate the “nature reserve” project, all you would need is: a slab of sod, a cut-out from a cardboard box and a marker. Somebody added the “Spokane Nature Reserve” to Facebook places. Only one person checked in.
…When beavers need relocating in Eastern Washington, their first destination is Joe Cannon’s backyard. The ecologist from the Lands Council has a beaver cage set up to house beaver families until a remote home has been found for them. This little guy (or gal) was causing problems for a rancher’s detention pond.
With a wide-angle lens, I had to get a little closer to the beaver than I would have liked. I didn’t notice the beaver’s facial expression on some shots until I got home that evening. When I showed Mike the photo (bottom right), he said, “That’s a troll face if I ever saw one.”
More sightings of the young High Drive Bluff moose happened over the weekend. Bicyclist and blogger,John Speare encountered a trail hog during one of his rides causing him to double back to avoid any confrontation.
Speare saw just the younger moose. Like the previous sighting covered on the site last week, the alleged mother was nearby, but out of view.
For those using the trails, use caution when near the moose. After all - they are still wild animals.
“I don’t think we (humans in modern urban world) really appreciate the “wild” part of animals sometimes,” Speare wrote in response to his blog post. He continued, “I fear that a human may do something stupid down there, get trampled/hurt/killed by a moose, and then the moose will be disappeared - that would be a shame.”
According to Washington Fish and Wildlife’s website, they recommend yielding the trail in the safest manner by either backing off or changing directions. Dogs should be leashed and kept quiet while moving away. Though the moose may appear to be just “hanging out” - it’s still a danger. A respectable distance should separate the onlooker and wildlife.
More safety tips are available online at WDFW’s website. For those in the neighborhood - if you see the moose wandering in the neighborhood above the High Drive Bluff, call WDFW’s Spokane office at (509) 892-1001 for assistance.
A possibly injured moose limped its way into the hills behind Glennaire Drive neighborhoods Tuesday morning. The incident was originally called into the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office by office staff at Moran Prairie Elementary who noticed it hanging around their school’s parking lot. The school’s principal, Dr. Mark Gorman, made sure no children were outside at the time.
Office staff watched as the moose, a young adult, adventured across the parking lot and into the playground. From there it crossed into the field at 57th and Glenrose Rd. crossing the street into the residential roads of the Glennaire neighborhood.
Sheriff’s Deputies and Fish and Wildlife officers unpacked their hazing gear from their vehicles at Glennaire Dr. and Williamette St. The moose was seen heading into the forested area just beyond the road. They marched through the tall grass hoping to find it. Just beyond the tree line, it was briefly seen darting into heavier patches of woods. Officers decided it was best to leave it be.
“We’re just going to monitor it for now,” Sgt. Dan Rahn, fish and wildlife, said. “Hopefully it will stay out of the neighborhood area and stay in the wooded area. With it being down by the elementary school and near the neighborhoods, we want to haze it out of the area. Normally we do that with paint balls - that’s usually fairly effective.”
Tranquilizing a moose for relocation is only a last resort for fish and wildlife. Rahn says sometimes the moose don’t deal with it very well - and it’s even worse during the harsh winter months of January and February.
“When you tranquilize, the moose is released and a lot of times, they get stressed out or they aspirate, vomit and it gets stuck in their lungs. They die of infection a few days later,” Rahn explained. He continued, “This winter hasn’t been too hard on them. Last year we had that record snow in November - the ground was covered for several months.”
When moose are tranquilized, fish and wildlife primarily snaps on ear tags to keep track of them in case they show up in a neighborhood again.
“Most of the time they don’t. We take them up in the mountains way out of the way to release them,” Rahn explained. Most of the time they’re dropped off at Mt. Spokane depending on the roads and snow.
Fish and Wildlife Officer Curt Wood was able to catch a glimpse of the moose before it disappeared.
“Hopefully it will be fine as far as the leg goes. It didn’t look to severely injured. Give it some time and see how it goes,” Wood said.
I'm currently in Spokane, Wash., origins in Western Washington, and Brooklyn-bound in May/June.
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