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Thread: moose hunt

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Eagle River<AK

    Default moose hunt

    We had an interesting moose hunt early this week. I flew my daughter out to hunt with me and we landed on a sandbar adjacent to the low foothills of a mountain. We had to hunt in a forest of spruce, small willow and other brush. It was very noisy to walk in and visibility was limited to a very short distance. We set up on the uphill end of a 2-3 acre area which was pretty much covered with small willow brush and a few very small spruce and one area of alder brush. It gave us a fairly good view based on the area in which we were hunting, and there was a lot of fresh sign. We did some calling, usually by scraping a spruce tree on the upper edge of the opening and rarely a series of bull grunts. We sat there for about 9 hours one day and almost 11 the next. The spot we were using for viewing required that we stand in order to view most of the area. We took turns standing and sitting (dozing, reading) and about 2:30 PM my daughter had me stand as she had heard something moving. We were partially shielded by a spruce about two feet in diameter with no branches below about eight feet and almost no other cover around us. Suddenly I saw the willow brush moving and then a cow moose head appeared about 25 yards away. Then I could hear some VERY soft bull grunts coming from her at every step; I again looked at her closely to see if I had erred and it was a bull, but no, it was a big cow. She was angling uphill toward us and was apparently going to pass about 10 feet above us just inside some taller willow; the wind was blowing gently uphill from us and from her direction. She got about 15 feet away and suddenly shoved her nose down on the ground and stood there for quite a period of time (later my daughter told me that she had taken a pee at that spot and actually covered it up with a dirt clod). Next she changed her direction to angle uphill more and encountered the spot where we had each separately taken a walk uphill to stretch and warm up; our last walk had been about two hours prior. She didnít like that and then turned back to angle slightly below us and kept walking with no more grunting. I had been standing directly behind the tree from her when she was fifteen feet away and my daughter was right behind me. We didnít dare move as any motion would make too much noise and we were hoping that a bull might be right behind her. She kept coming and stopped with her nose six feet from me and at that point I was almost totally beside the tree with no cover between the cow and me, my daughter was beside me. She was angling about 10 degrees downhill from us when she stopped with her head facing straight ahead in her direction of travel. The breeze was still from her general direction toward us. She stood in that position for a couple of minutes, obviously sensing or smelling something, but never once looked in my direction; I figured that in two more steps that she would either step on my daughterís camera or GPS which lay on the ground right in front of me. Finally after never noticing me, she turned and walked off quickly in the direction from which she had arrived.

    Several things were of interest to me; she was giving a very soft bull grunt with each step, she didnít like the human pee at all, and as usual, my camouflage (ASAT) was VERY hard for an animal to detect.

  2. #2
    Member TWB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006


    You'll find that moose can be very easy to hide from, I've found that detection is rarely by color (not that it doenst help) but more so movement. Their alert senses are geared in a predatory manner - movement, sound and smell. Perhaps she had her guard down and was simply curious. Surprised the smell of urine alone didnt spook her.

    I have never seen or heard of a cow doing soft bull grunts..perhaps it was confused with itself.
    We do not go to the green woods and crystal waters to rough it, we go to smooth it. We get it rough enough at home; in towns and cities; in shops, offices, stores, banks anywhere that we may be placed

  3. #3
    New member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Eagle River

    Default Moose Grunts

    I've had the priviledge to spend a fair amount of time around a bunch of captive moose in different seasons, and like you, most hunters would be surprised to know that the standard "bull grunt" is used by both sexes. The noice you're referring to is more common among cows with calves (even 1.5 year olds), but sometimes multiple cows will make that noise without a calf around. I suppose it's more common when they want to keep in contact when visibility is limited, but visibility doesn't have to be limited for cows make "bull" grunts. Bulls and cows will also do that to "greet" their human keepers. There are more agressive vocalizations that are more common among bulls (like "blows"), but even pissed off cows will do that. Their vocalizations are much more complex than most people realize.

  4. #4

    Default cow "grunts"

    I had the same thing happen to me here in the Mat-Su valley two years ago. I had just perched myself on a tree stump early in the morning and had not been there 5 minutes when I heard a "bull" grunting and coming from my right and it walked right in front of me at approx 50 yards. I could see the moose very clearly in my bino's and it was a cow. Not so much as a spike sticking out of its head. I was pretty confused as well. She made some pretty convincing bull grunts. Almost had me fooled.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Eagle River,AK

    Default Same here..

    Right at day break I started my long cow calls in a swamp last year and quickly heard a moose coming straight towards me complete with GRUNTS! I kneeled down behind a small spruce, jacked one in, and started to get a little excited when all of a sudden a cow pops out and walks right on by me with in feet!


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