Moose spotted with porcupine quills in its nose in Colorado

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A moose has been spotted with porcupine quills in its nose after protecting its calf.

CPW North West Region

A moose took a porcupine to protect his calf – and got a spiky face in return.

The mother moose was recently spotted in Breckenridge, Colorado with needles sticking out of her nose, Colorado Parks and Wildlife said Monday, June 6.

Wildlife officials believe “the porcupine got too close to her calf,” Parks and Wildlife said. “When mom moved it, it was stuck with quills.”

The moose was unharmed, but concerned bystanders reported its injuries to Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

Some wildlife officials have said that the moose’s determination while defending its calves serves as a warning people to stay away from moose.

“This female moose took a porcupine to protect her calf,” officials said. “Do you think she’s afraid of you?” Keep a safe distance from the moose.

On Monday, May 31, a woman was charged and trampled by a moose while running on a trail in Colorado. She was looking down at her feet and saw the moose when she looked up.

The runner reported seeing a newborn moose calf in the area, and officials believed the moose was protecting her calf.

Moose attacks in Colorado are increasing, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife. They are protective animals that will defend their territory and their young.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife has had at least 15 moose conflicts since 2013 where people were injured. Dogs have been involved in almost all of these conflicts, wildlife officials said.

If someone encounters a moose, they should give it space to roam, Colorado Parks and Wildlife said. People should not try to move a moose out of the way.

“Not only is it dangerous, but it is also considered harassment and it is illegal,” officials said. “If a moose has its ears laid back, paws the ground, licks its muzzle, or changes direction to face you, you’re too close and should back off.”

Breckenridge is about 80 miles southwest of Denver.

Maddie Capron is a real-time McClatchy reporter specializing in the outdoors and wildlife in the western United States. She graduated from Ohio University and previously worked at CNN, the Idaho Statesman and the Ohio Center for Investigative Journalism.

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