Genus and Species — Alces alces

~Kingdom: Animalia ~ Phylum: Chordata ~ Sub-Phylum: Vertebrata

~Class: Mammalia ~ Sub-Class: Theria ~ Order: Artiodactyla

~Family: Cervidae ~ Sub-Family: Odocoilinae


Common Name: MOOSE

Plural Name: MOOSE


Moose are the largest of all living deer

Male Known As The Bull Moose

Female Known As The Cow Moose


Size

Length: 8-10 feet

Height: to shoulder, 5-7 feet

Weight: 800-1500 lb.  

Female smaller than male


The largest bull moose ever taken in NH weighed in at 1040 pounds, dressed weight.

Live weight of this moose would have been approximately 1400 lbs

The largest cow dressed at 815 lbs.


Moose Teeth

Moose have teeth which are specially designed for eating plant materials and

for browsing on bushes and small trees.


In all, they have 32 teeth made up of 12 ridged molars, 12 premolars,  

6 incisors and 2 canines.


Incisors are the front teeth. Like other members of the deer family,

moose only have lower incisors, and do not have upper incisors

(though they have both upper and lower molars).


As moose get older, their teeth get worn out.


Worn out teeth lead to reduced food intake, and reduced physical condition.


Breeding

Sexual maturity: 16-28 months

Rut (Mating season): September to October

Gestation: 240-250 days

Number of young: 1 or 2


Lifestyle

Habitat: Solitary or in small groups


Diet: Leaves, branches and twigs, water and marsh plants.


Moose may consume 45 pounds of food per day.


Lifespan: Up to 20 years. Average 10-15 years


Moose can trot as fast as 35 miles an hour.


They are good swimmers and can remain underwater for up to a minute.


Moose are ruminants, and spend much of their life chewing cud.

Ruminant: meaning their stomach is divided into four discrete chambers, which are concerned with particular, sequential aspects of digestion of the fibrous plant biomass these animals feed upon. Moose ruminate, meaning they regurgitate and rechew forage that has spent some time fermenting in one of the four-chambers of the stomach.


Moose Antlers

Bull Moose shed their antlers each winter and grow a new set each spring.


Cows do not grow antlers. The Reindeer/Caribou is the only deer species in

which both the male and female have antlers!


The greatest antler spread of a bull taken in NH is 68 inches



HOW ANTLERS GROW

Both white-tailed deer and moose grow new antlers every summer and

then shed them after the breeding season.


Here's the general timetable for antler growth:


Early spring

Increasing hours of daylight cause the pituitary gland to give the signal to start

antler growth. Actual growth starts in April and May.


April

"Buds" appear.


May to late July

Blood transports calcium, phosphorus, proteins and other materials from which

the antlers are made. The soft skin and short hair covering each antler have a

plush-like quality, giving this stage the name "velvet."


Late August

Antlers reach full size. The male hormone testosterone is being produced in

increasing amounts and initiates the shedding of the velvet. The blood supply dries

up and the velvet dries and begins peeling.


Mid-September

Time of prime condition. Velvet is rubbed off against trees and shrubs, leaving the lifeless, bony core of the antler. This hardens and is polished by continual rubbing.


October-November

Peak of the breeding season, when bucks spar, or fight with each other.


January

Toward the end of the breeding season, the antlers become loosened around the base. The shedding of antlers is related to a decrease of testosterone. Shed antlers fall

to the ground and are gnawed by rodents, rabbits and hares for the

minerals and protein they contain.


MOOSE ON THE LOOSE ~ DRIVERS BEWARE

The Origin of the word "MOOSE" is thought to be from "mus" or "moos" of the Algonquian

(North American Indian) family of languages

thought to mean "eater of twigs."

  • Moose (Bull)0:07

Moose Scoops Ice Cream


To avoid a moose collision:

* Drive below the speed limit -- especially at dusk and dawn and

especially in moose-heavy areas;


* Use high beams when possible;


* Be able to stop within the zone of your headlights;


*Scan the sides of the roads as you drive.


There have been thousands of collisions with moose in New Hampshire throughout

the years, according to biologists and law enforcement authorities.


New Hampshire has an estimated population of 3,000 to 5,000 moose.