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Can Moose Swim?

can-moose-swim

ANSWER:

Moose CAN swim.

More Info: Moose are good swimmers. They also enjoy standing in bodies of water, especially in hot and humid weather. Their long legs make it easy for them to reach the bottom. Moose have been clocked at a swimming speed of six miles per hour and have been observed swimming up to two hours at one time.

Moose Food

Moose graze on plants growing underwater, but will graze on terrestrial plants like twigs and saplings. Their favorite food is water lilies. Moose prefer eating water plants growing in swampy areas and bogs. One adult moose eats an average of 44 pounds of vegetation per day.  They eat ravenously in the autumn to put on a thick layer of fat for the winter, consuming up to 130 pounds of vegetation per day.

Moose have a special dewclaw on the back of each hoof to keep the animal from getting trapped in deep mud. This is a great adaptation for an animal weighing anywhere from 600 to 1200 pounds.

Moose Activity

Moose are most likely to be found in the water at dawn and dusk when they are most active. Calves as young as three weeks old swim with their mothers. They can hold their breath underwater for 60 seconds. This gives moose plenty of time to locate and tear out a watery tidbit. These huge herbivores have been known to dive in order to feed on bottom-growing pond or lake vegetation.

Moose may look docile but are capable of inflicting serious injuries on anyone or anything that gets too close to them. Leave swimming moose alone, especially a mother with a calf.

 

Resources

“Moose (Alces alces).” eduScapes: A Site for Life-long Learners. N.p., n.d. Web. 1 Nov. 2012. http://www.eduscapes.com/nature/moose/index1.htm

“Moose – Alces alces – NatureWorks.” New Hampshire Public Television – Engage. Connect. Celebrate.. N.p., n.d. Web. 1 Nov. 2012.  http://www.nhptv.org/natureworks/moose.htm

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