Motorists Beware Moose Are on the Loose in the Adirondacks
The good news, It's the best time of the year to see a moose in the Adirondacks. The bad news, is it's also the best time to hit one on the road. The NY Department of Conservation says it's mating season and the animals are looking for love.
Male moose are the most active as they wander out of their usual hiding places looking for a mate. Adding to the danger, most of the wandering is done around dawn and dusk when it's hardest to see them. And because they are so tall, most headlights don't pick up their dark-colored bodies. The size can also be detrimental when hitting one, their body often gets thrown into the windshield of vehicles.
Some obvious things you can do to protect yourself; slow down around sunrise and sunset, always have the seatbelt secured, stay alert, and use flashers when you spot one to warn other motorists. Some not-so-obvious things to keep in mind:
- Moose travel in groups, if you see one there are probably more out of sight.
- One standing beside the road may get spooked and run into the road as you near.
- If you are about to make contact, brake but DON'T swerve. Trying to dodge a moose brings more obstacles into play like other cars, trees, and other obstacles.
- Motorcyclists should be especially alert for moose;
If you did hit a moose and kill it, don't remove the animal unless a permit is obtained from the investigating officer at the scene of the crash. Hunters, hikers, and other outdoor enthusiasts are encouraged to enjoy wildlife from a distance. Do not approach wildlife, particularly species like bear or moose that could be aggressive toward humans or protective of their young.
New York has never recorded a human fatality resulting from a vehicle crash with a moose. Find more information about moose at the DEC's website. And report moose sightings to the DEC to help track their movement.