Monday, October 7, 2013

Bull Moose, Alaska

Moose are the largest of the deer family that live in the Northern Hemisphere. Alaska has a large moose population including about 1500 that live within the Municipality of Anchorage. They wander in and out of residential areas, grazing on landscaping and natural shrubbery in backyards, and sometimes hold up traffic on city streets or cross busy highways giving all involved an adrenaline rush.
During late August until early October moose are in their mating, also called rutting, season in Alaska. Moose, a solitary animal most of year, become more social this time of the year staying up all night while eating and resting during the day then staying up all night and doing it all over again.
Bull moose grow their huge antlers every year starting from small nubs in spring to massive fighting weapons doubling as shields by fall. When the mating season begins, the bulls' antler velvet starts shedding and with assistance from the bulls, will be ready for the mating season. Here is a younger bull moose I photographed in the mid September in Anchorage. The velvet is still hanging on his antler.