Mother Moose Kills Wildlife Photographer

( – Alaskan wildlife photographer Dale Chorman, 70, was killed on May 19th while trying to take photos of a mother moose and her babies.

Chorman and his friend were “walking through the brush” on his 3-acre property in Homer looking to photograph the moose with a pair of newborn calves when the mother moose charged at him, kicking him to death, according to Alaska Department of Public Safety spokesperson Austin McDaniel. While Chorman died at the scene, his companion was able to escape uninjured. Authorities were unable to determine if Chorman was killed by the moose kicking or stomping him or a combination because the companion did not witness the attack.

In a post on social media, his son, Nate Spence-Chorman, noted his father was not a “hapless fool stumbling into danger” but that his father was someone who was aware of the risks, and while looking for a great photo “got caught in a dangerous moment.” His son said his father “died doing what he loved,” adding the family does not want the mother moose, who was only protecting her babies, harmed.

Alaska State Troopers posted on social media that the mother moose was no longer in the area.

A female moose, known as a cow, can weigh close to 800 pounds, while a male moose weighs close to 1,600 pounds. They can be about six feet tall. While moose are not known to be particularly aggressive under normal circumstances, if humans venture too close to their babies, they become extremely protective, kicking and stomping during an attack.

McDaniel stated that during calving season, which typically runs from mid-May to mid-June, people “definitely want to give them extra space,” adding that female moose with babies “are going to be some of the more aggressive moose” you could have contact with. He stated that cow moose with babies “become unpredictable and work to protect their calves at any cost.”

There are around 5-10 moose attacks each year in Alaska, which has an estimated human population of around 737,000 and an estimated moose population of 200,000. However, thankfully, most attacks are not fatal.

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