2:21 p.m. Update: Wandering moose shot by police
CORNWALL – It’s not everyday you see large wildlife stroll into the city limits in Cornwall.
But some onlookers got a rare sight Thursday morning as a young bull (male) moose trotted into the paved parking lot behind Winners on Tollgate Road.
The area of the parking lot backs on the railway tracks and woods, sandwiched between Brookdale Avenue, Fortier Street and Edgar Street.
The moose has been moving east and has been around Gail Elizabeth Court and Blessed Sacrament Drive, near the water tower (as of 12:56 p.m.).
Cornwall police Const. Dan Cloutier told Cornwall Newswatch officers are watching the moose and trying to keep the animal from wandering on Highway 401.
“We’re hoping for the best outcome and that he goes back into the bush,” Cloutier said.
The Ministry of Natural Resources advises you to keep your distance if you see the moose.
“The best thing to do in cases like that is…to keep your distance and allow the animal (the ability) to get back to a green space,” said Jolanta Kowalski, spokeswoman with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry.
Moose “occasionally” wander into city limits, Kowalski said
“They’re large animals and they can be unpredictable even if it’s not a full grown one, it’s still an unpredictable wild animal so we always encourage people to stay away,” Kowalski said.
And above all else…”don’t try to take pictures with it (selfies). Trust me, that happens,” she said.
Dr. Brian Hickey, research scientist with the River Institute, says with healthy moose populations in the area, this does happen from time to time.
“It doesn’t happen every year or even every year, but it does happen from time to time. Since I’ve been in Cornwall over the last three decades or so, this has happened three or four, maybe five times,” Hickey said.
In the past, he’s been witness to moose at St. Paul’s school and Guindon Park
There are healthy moose populations around the Alfred Bog, about 70 kilometers northeast of Cornwall, and the animals are known to roam.
“There’s enough little patches of forest and open areas where they can wander out of their main habitat and follow 401 corridors and things like that and end up in Cornwall,” he said.
“It (the moose) will likely find its way back eventually to a more suitable place that’s a little less populated,” Hickey said.