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Moose That Attacked Snowshoers Dies

Moose That Attacked Snowshoers Dies

Posted - Mar. 15, 2004 at 7:44 a.m.



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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- A moose that attacked three snowshoers earlier this month has died, possibly due to malnutrition and hypothermia.

The 800-pounde bull moose died Sunday afternoon in Toll Canyon, which was where it attacked the snowshoers on March 3, near Parleys Summit.

The moose was malnourished and also probably suffered hypothermia from being partially submerged in a creek, said Sgt. Scott White of the state Division of Wildlife Resources.

"We're always sad when an animal we do so much for and try to get going dies," White said. "We realize it's part of nature."

The moose died in an area far from roads. DWR officials plan to leave the carcass in the wild, White said.

Nick Baldwin, 65, who was injured when the moose attacked, wants an autopsy on its brain to determine whether it is diseased.

"I think this might be important not only me, but for people who encounter moose in the future. Why bury it, literally?" Baldwin said.

Baldwin suffered a fractured shoulder blade and injuries to the soft-tissue of his left leg.

"Any moose stomping, any bear mauling -- you ought to just kill them. Because they don't pay taxes and I do," Baldwin said.

The moose was tranquilized after it tried to attack DWR officers, which was after the attack on Baldwin. Officers decided against euthanizing because "we always try to give the animals the benefit of the doubt," White said.

White said moose choose flight or fight when others are in their territory. "With the snow, (this moose) felt it couldn't run away," he said.

Moose should only be down about 15 to 20 minutes after being tranquilized. This moose was down about 11/2 hours. Then it left.

When officers learned the animal had not moved from another location, they began checking on it and feeding it willow brush once or twice a day.

White discovered the moose kneeling in a creek Sunday morning. It either fell or walked down a hill and into the creek. It was not there the night before, White said.

For 21/2 hours Sunday, White shoveled a path away from the creek for the moose. The moose did not use it. Then officers tried lifting the animal. About that time, it died, White said.

(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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