COLORADO SPRINGS — Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) officers were able to capture the moose calf orphaned in Wednesday’s attack near Nederland, Colorado. The calf was captured near the West Magnolia Trailhead Wednesday evening.
The female calf, likely less than three days old, will be kept and cared for by the CPW veterinary staff. Its probability for survival is unknown at this point. CPW says they are unsure of how much early colostrum the calf would have received from her mother. Colostrum provides much-needed nutrients and antibodies vital to its survival.
While CPW cannot take every orphaned animal, it was determined that the calf’s growth and development would be beneficial for CPW’s educational purposes.
Moose calves are born in a three to four week period from the end of May to mid-June, according to CPW. They weigh between 28 to 35 pounds at birth and within the first hour of life, begin nursing. Calves start to take solid food a few days after birth. During their first five months, while suckling and foraging, calves will gain about two pounds of weight per day, CPW says. By October, calves can reach weights of 385-400 pounds and will be upwards of 700 pounds by age two. Calves are generally weaned in the fall at the time the mother is breeding again. An adult cow moose will weigh around 800 or 900 pounds.