TIPS FOR HUNTING MOOSE
Article Written By; Rob White,
According to the Word Web dictionary, a moose or an elk is a large, Northern deer with a large, flat snout. Are you already cringing at the thought of hunting a moose? Not to worry, it has been in practice for as long as we can remember. Its meat is enough to feed a family for many months, which is one of the reasons it is still being hunted up till today. Furthermore, if
you’re looking to be self sufficient in hunting, it is a wonderful skill to learn. Having moose hunting skills also ensures that you and your family are always fed with delicious meat. There are laws regulating moose hunting, so a permit is required. Please make sure that you’re hunting legally.
CHARACTERISTICS OF A MOOSE
It is not out of place to learn about your prey, if you intend to take it down successfully. Therefore, we bring to you the characteristics of a moose that will aid you in hunting it down. It is the largest member of the deer family. Weighing over 700 kg, it provides a lot of meat and also makes it a very dangerous animal. There is no safe way to approach it as it has the ability to kick with all its legs. However, they are lonely animals, converging only during the mating seasons. Moose has a sharp sense of smell, hearing and eyesight. They can be found in most Northern forest zones where snow is common during winter. They tend to stay near lakes or rivers. Note that the further North you go, the larger the moose will be, making the Alaskan moose
the biggest. They’re mostly active during the mating seasons, between late September and mid October, coinciding with the hunting seasons.
EQUIPMENT REQUIRED FOR MOOSE HUNTING
Having the characteristics of your prey at your fingertips is one thing, having the right equipment to take them down is another.
Besides your general outdoor survival and camping equipment, the following equipment are appropriate for moose hunting.
You need to be warm and dry when on a hunt which generally lasts for a couple of days. Also ensure that you wear clothes that are quiet when out scouting or hunting, partly because the sound of a jacket rustling may give you away and more importantly, it may stop you from hearing quiet clues that could indicate that a moose is in the vicinity.
Your choice of weapon is of vital importance. Rifles should be loaded with ammo powerful enough to penetrate the
thick skin, muscles and bones in order to reach the vital organs. Depending on the hunting method, moose can be shot from as close as six feet away, or over 300 yards. A bolt action rifle with a variable scope is an ideal choice. If you’re using a bow, you need a bow capable of penetrating skin and bone to kill a moose. A minimum of a 65 pound pull will be required along with fixed broadhead arrows that are at least 450 grains.
A pair of binoculars or a scope are very useful. They allow you to view small movements that your bare eyes would have no chance of seeing. It’s advisable to focus on a particular area as you’re far more likely to pick up small movements this way.
The moose’s great sense of smell can be used to your advantage. Natural lures are generally derived from urine, either that of a cow in heat or a dominant bull and can be used to spread around your hunting area to lure either bulls or cows in.
This should be fairly long and very strong to help bring the carcass in after a kill.
These are great for when the meat has been butchered, to keep it safe from flies and other bugs.
We’ll discuss the two main methods of moose hunting.
This method involves scanning one particular area from a raised wooden structure. It can be an established stand, or a structure put up few days to the hunt. The location depends on the type of weapon you use; with long ranges favoring rifles, stands are fantastic for bow hunters also. This method has proven to be the most successful, with stand hunters bringing in more moose. Your scent is less likely to be picked up as you are above ground level. A harness should be worn when up a stand, as there have been cases of hunters falling to their deaths in the past.
This involves stalking your prey and making your way through the forest or along rivers. Extreme care and caution is taken with each step to avoid sounds that might give the hunters away. Use the wind must be used favorably to avoid your prey getting a whiff of your scent and taking off. It requires a knowledge of the terrain, therefore previous scouting is essential, as well as maps of the area.
MOOSE HUNTING TIPS
Now we are more familiar with the moose and its behavior, as well as the equipment and methods involved in hunting them, we can take a look at some fantastic tips that will give you an edge during the hunting season.
*SCOUT FOR A HUNTING LOCATION:
Find out where the moose population is larger and look into hunting success rates in a given area. When you have selected a general area, start looking at maps of said area and narrow your specific zone down. If you are scouting just ahead of the hunt, look out for scrapes and other recent signs of moose activity such as rubbed trees, stripped velvet and damaged shrubs. Ensure that you’re never too far away from your vehicle. If you’re successful and manage to take down a moose, that’s a lot of weight that you will need to take back to your car.
*IDEAL HUNTING TIME:
As earlier mentioned, the hunting season coincides with mating season. Generally, moose are most active very early in the morning and late in the day. These are the times you must be most vigilant, stop and look around, and listen for movement. If
the weather is hot moose are very unlikely to respond to calls during the day and will confine their activities to the darker, cooler hours.
*HUNT WITH A PARTNER:
It’s best to hunt with a partner, ensuring that you are prepared for anything. With one working as the communicator and the other as the shooter, you can be sure that you have each other’s backs covered and that the weapon is always ready.
Armed with these tips, we’re quite sure that you are ready to go and kill a moose. Remember that hunting alongside a seasoned moose hunter is invaluable. With regards to your weapon, ensure that you are familiar with it before the hunt. Practice using the ammunition you will be using on the hunt so that you are used to it. Ensure that your rifle scope is correctly sighted just before the hunt. Learn to understand the moose and why it behaves the way it does, and use the knowledge to your advantage.