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Friday, January 13, 2017

It's a Moose!

Just before our latest rounds of snow, Shyla and I had an experience that was remincent of the time, just about a year ago, when three moose somehow snuck up behind me while I was taking photos of Shyla in the sunrise light.

This experience was also at sunrise. Shyla was perched on her favorite boulder when her eyes became more and more intensely focused somewhere behind me.

First her eyes widened.

Then her chin started to rise.

Her chin rose some more, and her eyes seemed to widen.

Then her gaze followed something to the left.
At that point, I stopped snapping photos, and I looked behind me. I saw nothing out of the ordinary. I visually checked every boulder, stump, and out-of-the-ordinary tree but I still saw no animals.

We finished our photography session with Shyla seeming a bit more relaxed. She galloped and played as I took photos.

After our photo session, we took off riding the trails nearby. Almost immediately, we saw this big guy. I wondered if Shyla had sensed him during our photo session -- that would explain her alarmed look.

I think that he's a young bull because he wasn't too hefty and his antlers weren't huge. On the previous day, he was with the mother moose and her calf (who I showed photos of recently). That made me wonder if he was a young adult offspring of the mother moose.

After standing a good distance away taking photos for a while, he did look directly at us. I took that as our cue to move along. He let us go peacefully. I love getting to observe wildlife like this!
My general experience with moose (so far) has been that bull moose seem less prone to get upset with humans than cow moose when it's not mating season. In contrast, cow moose with calves can go from relaxed to aggressive without much warning at any time of year.

It takes a long time to learn the ways of the wildlife around us. I love observing them but don't want to upset them or put me and Shyla in danger. I'm gradually learning how to do this with moose.


  1. How wonderful! Such beautiful photos of Mr Moose!

  2. Oh wow! You got some great shots of the moose. What amazing wildlife you have up there!

  3. Nice little bull for sure. Where is all your snow, it looks so green?

    1. This sighting was just before it started snowing about a week ago. I forgot about it in the midst of dealing with the snow and arctic conditions. I just ran across these photos in Lightroom and remembered!

  4. I love the expressions on Shyla's face! She sure knows how to give you nonverbal warnings.

  5. Yikes! We would have took off like lightning. They are so big
    Lily & Edward

  6. You are lucky to have Shyla watching your back. The moose probably was there for a time and wandered off before you saw him when you were snapping pictures of Shyla. Thanks for sharing your beautiful moose pictures.

  7. Wow, those were all fabulous shots. I've never encountered moose in all my years in Colorado and would probably pass out from fright if I did. Close encounters with elk and deer with big racks were enough to spook me silly. Happy weekend!

  8. Shyla is so good to give out those messages with her eyes and look. Magnificent fellow, and maybe he knew you were there the whole time. So glad this is a story with a happy ending and he didn't try to chase. And, as always, fantastic photos. p.s. I did notice the word "keep" in your comment.

  9. Shyla is so gorgeous! I'm glad you're staying safe out there in the wilderness! I love the moose photos! He's so cool!

  10. Most mothers seem to be like that! We love those moose pictures...

  11. Good detective work from Shyla:) That moose looks plenty BIG to us!

  12. Trust the eyes. Bert does a little whine when we are close. Trust Your Dog

  13. It was fascinating to watch the subtle changes in Shyla's expression

  14. Dang, he looks pretty darn big to us!

  15. WOW!! I get excited if I spot a rabbit!!

  16. If there is such a thing he was a beautiful moose with what looked like a very fine coat, and bless Shyla, she tried to let you know. At least you will have him in your mind when you are out there and be xtra careful.

    Cheers and hugs, Jo and Stella


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