Only in Alaska
With good reason, our 50th state is known as “The Last Frontier.” And here are some examples of things that you’ll never see reported occurring in The Lower 48.
Road-Killed Moose Delivered Fresh to Your Door
Think of it like Dominos Delivery, only with road-killed moose instead of pepperoni pizza and extra cheese.
For years, Alaska residents and charities could place their names on a list to acquire moose hit and killed by vehicles on the state roadways, often resulting in the need to respond to the site of the accident in the middle of the night.
Beginning in 2012, thanks to a partnership with the Alaska Moose Federation, the carcass delivered straight to the lucky recipient—fresh as fresh can be!
According to The Homer Tribune, when a moose kill is reported, Alaska troopers call the federation, which contacts an on-call volunteer driver in that region. The drivers hop into their truck, get to the site, winch the moose into the flatbed and strap it down for transport. The driver is put in touch with the next recipient on the salvage list, whom they call to get directions for the moose delivery.
There’s some information about the kill to be recorded — where, when, what — and paperwork to be signed by the recipient, and the driver is timed for their response to the scene, time at the scene and time to get the moose delivered.
Butchering and disposal of the moose still is entirely up to the recipient, and most of the salvage volunteers are outdoorsmen and women who want to help conserve wild game populations as much as they want opportunities to harvest them.
Only in Alaska could a trophy-sized, 1,200-pound bull moose become accidentally strung up on a towering powerline and dangle precipitously, more than 50 feet in the air.
Apparently, as miles of wire rested on the ground during a construction project near Fairbanks, a meandering moose somehow got its antlers entangled in the electrical cables. As workers farther down the line slowly winched the cables into place, they unknowingly lifted the massive (and probably, quite bewildered) ungulate skyward.
According to the report in the Fairbanks News-Miner, the prevailing theory is that the moose came across the sagging and swaying wires and, in a testosterone-filled moment, decided to challenge the power line to a fight.
Alaska Fish and Game information officer Cathie Harms’ first thought when she saw the picture was that it was computer-enhanced.
“I thought somebody did a Photoshop thing,” said Harms.
The moose was alive when it was lowered to the ground but was later killed when officials from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game decided against tranquilizing it to remove the wires. They reasoned that the already-stressed animal would die and the meat would not be salvageable if drugs were utilized.
The manager for the electric company summed it up saying, “I can’t see how it could happen, but it happened.”
“A Brown Bear Has Killed a Moose in Our Yard”
The opening line spoken by Terri Lyon on a video she taped from her home’s front window is not something you hear every day, not even if you reside outside a remote, last frontier kind of place like Homer, Alaska, as do Terri and her husband, Gary.
Noises coming from his driveway woke Gary Lyon about 6:30 a.m. one Sunday, according to a report in the Homer News.
“I looked out the window and to my astonishment there were huge chunks of moose hair scattered up the driveway,” Lyon said. “Then I saw these two big animals--a mature sow brown bear that had this cow moose in its death grip. They were in the midst of the struggle.”
Lyon woke his wife and they began taking still photos and video footage.
“The bear ripped (the moose’s) chest open, ripped out its heart, took the heart out and ate it. It was just like a horror movie,” Lyon told the local paper. “All the while it was kind of looking at us and looking at the woods. You could sense it wanted to get out of there. Then it got some or all of the liver, ripped that out and carried it off into the woods.”