CPW officers rescue baby moose from Grand Lake basement

McKenna Harford
Sky-Hi News
A calf moose fell into the remains of a basement at a burned home in Grand Lake. Neighbors tried to build a ramp to help the calf get out, but ultimately, Colorado Parks and Wildlife officers tranquilized the moose to get him out.
Courtesy Colorado Parks and Wildlife

Colorado Parks and Wildlife officers reunited a moose calf and its mother after freeing the calf from the remains of a burned basement in Grand Lake last week.

On Aug. 19, CPW received a call that a moose calf had fallen into a four-foot deep foundation of a home in the Aspen Pine Estates that had burned in the East Troublesome Fire.

Neighbors had tried to build a ramp using plywood to help the calf get out, but it wasn’t able to gain enough traction to overcome the steep climb.

The cow moose was waiting nearby when CPW Officer Serena Rocksund responded.

“The calf’s mother would come up to the foundation, walk over to the calf and touch muzzles and walk away about 40 yards,” Rocksund said. “The residents saw the calf and mother were stressed and needed help so they called CPW.”

According to CPW Area Wildlife Manager Jeromy Huntington, there have been an increase in moose-human encounters in the Grand Lake area since the East Troublesome Fire.

“It’s a good reminder that folks need to fence off foundations and cover their window wells because animals can get trapped and die,” Huntington said.

After CPW reunited the calf and cow, the two were relocated to a safer environment in Craig.
Courtesy Colorado Parks and Wildlife

Ultimately, both moose were tranquilized so that they could be relocated via a wildlife transport trailer to a more suitable home in Craig.

“We didn’t want to take the risk that this moose might get trapped again if we released it near the burn area,” Huntington said.

In addition, CPW has been working to grow the moose population in Craig and Meeker, so the rescue turned out to be doubly beneficial.

“So this relocation actually was a win-win for these moose and the CPW project,” Huntington said.