Northwest Trek Wildlife Park is now home to a healthy, five-month-old Alaskan moose calf named Birch. He will soon join Aspen, the wildlife park’s 5-year-old resident female moose, in the 435-acre Free-Roaming Area alongside Roosevelt elk, American bison, trumpeter swans, caribou, bighorn sheep and mountain goats.
“It’s exciting to welcome another generation of moose to Northwest Trek, and to provide a new companion for Aspen,” said zoological curator Marc Heinzman. “Once Birch grows into adulthood, he will be a thrilling sight for our visitors as he grows his rack of antlers each year.”
Birch arrived at Northwest Trek from the Alaska Zoo in early November and is adjusting well in an off-exhibit area. He received a comprehensive wellness exam from the wildlife park’s veterinarian yesterday.
“He is a healthy moose and we are looking forward to watching him grow,” said head veterinarian Dr. Allison Case.
Birch will soon be introduced to his new buddy Aspen behind-the-scenes. Once the two moose are comfortable together, they will enter the Free-Roaming Area together, where guests may be able to spot them on a Wild Drive or Keeper Adventure Tour. Hint: moose love nestling in bracken (a tall fern), so keep an eye out for long ears and a long nose popping out from behind the foliage.
Birch currently weighs about 292 pounds and is 5 feet tall with lots of room to grow. Moose are the tallest wild animals in North America, growing up to 1,200 pounds, 10.5 feet long and 7.5 feet high.
Moose play a crucial role in helping people learn more about Northwest ecosystems.
“Providing opportunities for our visitors to experience moose across all stages of life and see them exhibiting natural behaviors helps foster a sense of empathy and appreciation for the species, which we hope will in turn lead to caring about wild moose and the places they call home,” Heinzman said.