Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Moose viewing?

I realized a while ago that I've never seen a moose in my life. Not in the wild, not in a zoo, etc. I've seen maps purporting to show what the moose's natural range is, but how common are they there? What are some easily-accessible places where one might be likely to spot a moose? Why aren't they in zoos?


There's another list for me to make... notable animals I've seen in the wild. I've seen wild coyotes within the L.A. city limits. Some of the more interesting ones I've seen are bobcats, condor, banana slugs, snakes, scorpions, armadillo (deceased), alligator, elk, burros, a sea turtle, humpback whales, porpoises, and (drumroll please...) the Maui mystery big cat. I caught a glimpse of it leaving the roadway while I was on the remote Pi'ilani Highway on the south side of Haleakala. Here's an official notice on it.

I've never seen a bear, a beaver, a bison, a tortoise, a wolf, a porcupine, a shark, or a bighorn sheep in the wild. I've heard many coqui frogs, but never seen one. I've smelled many skunks, but never seen one. I've never seen a pika, marmot, nutria, or badger, either in the wild or in captivity.

8 Comments:

At Tuesday, January 16, 2007 at 12:23:00 PM PST, Blogger Mike said...

I've seen moose mainly in northern New England (Maine & New Hampshire) and in Wyoming. I think they do better where the weather is cold.

You should be able to find plenty of marmots in the Sierras.

 
At Tuesday, January 16, 2007 at 2:43:00 PM PST, Anonymous clynne said...

I've seen wild coyotes, bobcats, condor, banana slugs, snakes, armadillo (deceased), alligator, burros, humpback whales, porpoises, a bear, a shark (off the dock of the Cousteau resort in Fiji), many skunks, raccoons, and possums, but my big-time one is the herd of buffalo on Catalina island, which I caught from the air with Dad a few times.

I don't think I've ever seen moose, either.

If we get to count deceased (like the armadillos) I've also seen wild boar -- shot by our faculty RA my freshman year in college and roasted on a spit at a party.

 
At Tuesday, January 16, 2007 at 3:09:00 PM PST, Blogger Adam Villani said...

Oh yeah, I saw a decapitated wild boar once in a trap on Catalina Island. But somehow I missed seeing any bison there.

How do moose react to humans? Do they run away like smaller deer do, or are they too big to care? Do they ram into things with their antlers?

 
At Wednesday, January 17, 2007 at 6:13:00 AM PST, Anonymous Matthew B. said...

They have moose at the Toronto Zoo. If they're not common at other zoos, I'm not sure why not. Maybe they're expensive to maintain.

I've seen plenty of skunks. Had one living underneath my back doorstep for a while (we waited until we were sure it was out getting food, and then plugged up the hole). It feels really weird going to Japanese zoos and seeing skunks, raccoons, grey squirrels, and Canada geese.

I don't think I've seen all that much in the wild. Foxes, coyotes, wolves, porcupines, beaver, deer of various kinds (though not moose), hare, monkeys, and a lot of boring common animals. I have seen groundhogs, if that's the sort of thing you mean by "marmot."

 
At Wednesday, January 17, 2007 at 8:58:00 AM PST, Blogger Adam Villani said...

Yeah, I left out common animals like squirrels, rats, deer, rabbits, hares, hawks, etc., although I guess animals that are common in one place aren't necessarily common in others. I remember I was showing somebody from the Netherlands around and they were fascinated by a squirrel.

I should probably add elephant seals and California sea lions to the list. I've seen tons (literally) of them.

As far as I can tell, marmots and groundhogs are pretty much the same thing, or one is a type of the other, or something. I don't know how I've gone through life without seeing any skunks.

 
At Wednesday, January 17, 2007 at 9:34:00 AM PST, Blogger hagus said...

I've seen marmots in the Swiss Alps. I've also seen Nutria in the wild and at the New Orleans zoo.

 
At Wednesday, January 17, 2007 at 1:43:00 PM PST, Blogger Mike said...

I have chased moose before, and they have run away. But it was a stupid idea. A moose is a huge animal, really huge, and could easily attack you, especially if it was a female with young. (In contrast, I can't imagine a doe attacking under any circumstances.)

 
At Wednesday, January 17, 2007 at 4:46:00 PM PST, Anonymous doaf said...

Marmots and groundhogs are different, if I'm remembering correctly. Marmots, for one, are bigger and cuter.

Ah. Now I looked it up, and apparently a groundhog *is* a marmot, but Alpine Marmots and Groundhogs are different species. And, yes. Alpine Marmots (marmota marmota (if it gets the name twice, does that mean it's the most marmoty of the marmots?)(Ha! Marmoty!)) are larger and cuter. Just picture him with a German accent!! AAAAAAAAAAA!!!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alpine_Marmot

also, the groundhog
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Woodchuck

 

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