Wandering moose shot by police

In this supplied photo, a bull moose strolls behind the Winners shopping plaza on Thursday, Oct. 19, 2017 to the amazement of onlookers. (Kim Hurley via Newswatch Group)

CORNWALL – Fearing a calamity on Highway 401, Cornwall police have shot and killed a moose wandering through the north end of the city.

The animal was last reported around 1 p.m., heading east around Blessed Sacrament Drive and very close to the nation’s busiest freeway.

“The officers had made attempts to try and get the moose pushed back into the bush. It was deemed at that time that the moose wanted to go across the (Highway) 401,” Coultier said.

Cloutier said the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry was contacted before the animal was killed.

“They (MNRF) were made aware of the situation and were on their way, however, there would have been a time delay of approximately an hour,” he said.

The closest MNRF office is in Kemptville, approximately 109 kilometers from Cornwall.

Asked if SD&G O.P.P. were called because the moose was heading toward Highway 401 and provincial police jurisdiction, Cloutier said a call wasn’t made.

“The O.P.P. were not involved because of the speed of how this unfolded. You can’t predetermine what an animal’s going to think. We were hoping it would go back into the bush that was the outcome we were hoping for,” Cloutier said.

“It’s an unfortunate end to the scenario however the public’s safety is always number one on the list.”

Cloutier couldn’t say what arrangements were being made for removing the carcass as the event was still fresh.