I have been fortunate enough to have experienced some amazing wildlife sightings in my life: a black bear grazing on wild strawberries near me, California condors flying over my head, moose and deer living outside my cabin, great horned owls and northern harriers living outside my cabin, an ocean sunfish swimming underneath my kayak, a gray seal following my kayak…the list goes on. But this morning’s experience may top the list.
Upon returning from breakfast, I got an email that said “wolves” with a location less than 2 miles from my cabin. I grabbed my binoculars and camera and got in the car to find them. I didn’t see them at the first pull-off (just about 8 moose or so), so I headed further north. I saw another grown moose, separate from the rest, posturing in an unusual way. Then I saw a flash of blond/gray near its feet and I put my eyes to my binos. Two gray wolves were running around the moose’s legs; the moose stood up on its back legs trying to kick them away and in general held a threatening stance. The wolves quickly gave up, moved not far away from the moose, lay down for a quick rest in the snow, then continued moving north. Incredible. Apparently wolves here rarely go after moose because they rely on running their prey until they’re too tired and weak to fight back. Moose don’t run; they just stand their ground–not exactly what a wolf is looking for. So this pair of wolves (likely from a pack of 11 that was culled down to 2…) tried their luck, realized it was futile (probably not worth a moose hoof in the side), and moved on. I live a privileged life for sure.