MEDICINE HAT, AB - Fish and Wildlife Officers have tranquilized a moose which had been observed in the playgrounds of several schools this week.
The moose was tranquilized in the Southridge area, near Notre Dame Academy and Dr. Roy Wilson Learning Centre, which were both under a shelter-in-place for much of the afternoon after the animal wandered onto the school’s property.
The moose was also spotted at George Davison School and St. Patrick’s School on Monday and Tuesday.
"It went picture perfect today," said Fish and Wildlife Officer Jeff Gilham. "The dart went in right where it was supposed to and the moose went down in approximately 5-8 minutes, which is about normal for a moose of that size. We're going to take it out to Murray Lake to release it."
The entire operation took nearly two-hours to complete. Gilham said from when the moose went down, they had roughly an hour to relocate it.
"I know there's a couple moose out at Murray Lake, so it's not going to be alone."
Gilham then wanted to explain why the moose was relocated.
"It was hanging around the school yards and there's always that risk of safety. Moose are just like any other animal, they're unpredictable and we were getting a lot of calls. So, we decided due to the amount of calls that we would just remove it and reduce that risk all together."
This particular moose had been spotted several times over the last month with her calf. Gilham said the pair would not be relocated together.
"Usually around this time of the year the cow and calf would separate anyways because she'll probably be in calf in the fall."
As of 4:45 p.m, Gilham said the moose had officially been relocated to Murray Lake and was awake in good health.
"I'd just like to say thanks to the members of the public for being patient. I know it was a couple days of phone calls, but we wanted to make sure the public was safe and in order to do that, we needed officers to come in and help. We thank you for your patience and it was a job well done by everyone."
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