A New Hampshire Fish and Game conservation officer helped a moose get out of a slippery situation at the Deerfield Fairgrounds on Tuesday.
The state’s department of fish and game said it all began when a woman was walking her two dogs at the fairgrounds, and a cow moose stepped out into the field. Both dogs ran toward the moose, and one refused to come back when its owner called.
The moose, running away from the dog, slipped on a large patch of ice, and was unable to get up.
The department said the dog didn’t attack the moose, but when it became clear the moose couldn’t get up, the woman contacted authorities.
When Conservation Officer Michael Matson arrived on the scene, the moose was still lying on the ice. Wearing ice creepers, Matson approached the moose to see what her condition was.
“The closer he got to the animal, the angrier she got,’’ the department said in a statement. “Her ears were pinned backwards and the hair on her hump was standing up straight!’’
According to the department, Matson hoped his presence would be enough to push the moose to get up, but the moose fell back on the ice several times trying to stand. When Matson approached her again, clapping his hands, the moose “finally’’ mustered the strength to get up, the department said.
But even after getting up, the moose stood with an “aggressive posture’’ until Matson backed far enough away. Matson said the moose was likely afraid of falling again.
“My concern was that she would stay there in one spot, vulnerable to predators, such as coyotes, that frequent the area,’’ he said in a statement. “I decided that it would be best to continue harassing her until she was safely off the ice and onto solid ground.’’
It wasn’t until Matson started approaching the moose again, waving his arms and yelling, that she began walking away. She fell again, but recovered quickly.
“He watched her for another 15 minutes until she finally walked away, a little bruised, but wiser from the experience,’’ the department said.