The last thing a Salmon Arm woman expected to see early Wednesday morning was a moose and her calf strolling into her backyard.
Elizabeth Anderson’s roommate heard footsteps on the gravel outside a bedroom window at 4:15 a.m. on May 29. Expecting more nefarious visitors, everyone in the house was shocked to see the long-legged pair looking back at them.
“Not what I expected to see in my yard at 4:30 in the morning, that’s for sure,” Anderson said.
Shortly after, the moose jumped over the fence, breaking off the top of one of the boards. The calf could not make the same leap and settled into the flower bed for a rest in the shade to await mom’s return.
“It’s normal for moose, deer and elk, after they have their calves, to stash the calves in a safe place and then come back to them later on,” said Micah Kneller, a B.C. Conservation Officer. “We really don’t want to intervene here; we want to allow nature to take its course and have the cow come back to her calf.”
Due to the heat, people may be tempted to try and help the animal in anyway they can, but Kneller says this can do more harm than good.
“People will want to give them water and that kind of stuff – really, all that does is stress the calf out even more. We want to limit the amount of stress they’re under,” Kneller said.
A mother moose can leave its calf for up to 48 hours at a time.