Furry Friday: A Mangled Moose

Posted by Dan Arndt

 

Earlier this month I was invited out to find some wildlife with my friend Ignacio Yufera. We decided to try for an early visit to Highwood Pass in search of White-tailed Ptarmigan, and while we dipped on finding our target species, we did end up having a fairly successful day overall. This male Moose came into view quite a way down the road, and slowly walked by Ignacio’s vehicle, allowing us very good looks at it. What really stood out was its right antler, which was damaged and drooping down the side of his face. We initially thought of it as a simple damaged antler, which had broken off in a fight, but after taking a second look, it appears the antler was simply mal-formed, as it looks like it’s growing naturally that way.

Any thoughts on what may have caused it? Leave your comments below!

Snack time!

Oh, hello there.

What are you looking at? 

Look at how intimidating I am! 

Don’t judge me. It’s my special antler.

9 thoughts on “Furry Friday: A Mangled Moose

  1. Pingback: Furry Friday: More Mangled Moose | Birds Calgary

  2. Dan,

    The right antler was damaged early in the growing season. This first year moose will grow symetrical antlers next growing season.

    Good pictures.
    Gary Fonger,wildlife expert.

    • Thanks Gary. I definitely appreciate the explanation! It’d be a terrible fate for a moose to be stuck with only one antler for the rest of its life!

      – Dan

  3. Hi Lynette,

    Thanks for the comment. That’s what I suspected that the injury had happened early on in the growing season. I’m curious if the injury will persist into next year, or if it’s something that may only last for this breeding season. I think it’s pretty clear that this guy isn’t going to find a lady this year either way.

    – Dan

  4. Hi Dan,

    About the moose’s abnormal antler, it’s likely the damage happened at the base of the antler during its early development; similar to one our nails growing abnormally when the nail bed is damaged. Antlers are made of bone.

    Take care, love to still read your bird blog, even though I am not in Calgary!

    Lynette in Victoria.

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