The moose is a “repeat offender,” according to Bill London, district conservation officer for the Idaho Department of Fish and Game.
It’s the same moose spotted near Warm Springs Golf Course and ParkCenter Boulevard last June, he said. How did he know? Fish and Game officers tagged it when they captured and relocated it near Idaho City.
Why the return visit? The moose may have traveled into Boise because of the winter tick, said Steve Nadeau, statewide moose manager for Fish and Game.
“It causes moose to be very irritated and they scratch the hair off trying to get the ticks off,” he said. “That causes them to be a little more (erratic) in their behavior,” moving more and acting restless.
It also may have been in Boise because the spring season is a normal time for moose to be on the move, Nadeau said.
Dispatchers got calls about the moose’s new visit starting at 8:14 a.m. Thursday, according to Boise police. At that time, the moose was near 28th and Heron streets.
North End resident Wendy Stevens called the Statesman and described the moose running past her house, followed shortly by police cars.
“How in the name of God does a moose get down here?” she said. “I hope they don’t kill it. I hope they run it up to the Foothills.”
Boise police formed a perimeter around the moose to contain it within Elm Grove Park, between 22nd and 24th streets north of Irene Street. It settled down and rested in the park, London said.
“That was beautifully done and takes a lot of coordination to get that done,” he said. “So one reason this went so well is because Boise PD did such a good job controlling the traffic.”
Authorities asked that onlookers keep a safe distance from the moose during the effort to contain and remove it. They were particularly concerned about dog-walkers, since the moose spooked when dogs came by.
After the moose settled down and a veterinarian arrived on scene, Fish and Game officers began their gradual approach with a tranquilizer gun. They were able to successfully shoot the moose with a tranquilizer dart about 11 a.m. It fled before the drugs took effect, wobbling out of the park and collapsing in a resident’s driveway nearby.
Fish and Game and police officers then put blinders on the animal to make sure it wouldn’t get nervous, wrapped it in a tarp and loaded it into a trailer that headed for the Lowman area — farther away than its last relocation.
Remember: though they are cute and a great part of living in Boise, wild animals can be dangerous. Give them their space.— Boise PD (@BoisePD) April 23, 2015