Struggling moose suffered too long, says Ingonish resident
'She was still well enough that somebody could have helped her,' says Melonie Whitty
A moose stranded in an icy parking lot near the main street of Ingonish, Cape Breton had to be euthanized over the weekend.
RCMP Sgt. Al LeBlanc said authorities were first alerted to the moose on Friday.
Melonie Whitty and her roommate saw the injured moose struggling at the far end of an icy parking lot at St. Peter’s parish hall around 3:30 Friday afternoon.
She said the moose was only about five to 10 metres from the road.
“Every time she tried to get up, she would lose her footing, when she was falling I think she ended up hurting her front shoulder from so many attempts to get herself up,” said Whitty.
LeBlanc said RCMP contacted the Department of Natural Resources but they were unable to send anyone. Instead, he said a Parks Canada biologist went to the scene to assess the animal. He said the biologist made the decision to leave the animal where it was, hoping it might recover and move on.
When RCMP and DNR returned Saturday, the moose had slid down an icy embankment, further injuring itself.
“We attended again with DNR and it was determined that the animal was in really bad shape and DNR decided to euthanize the animal,” said LeBlanc.
It was an upsetting scene for Whitty who said more should have been done.
“She was still well enough that somebody could have helped her. She was on ice, she could have been picked up with some sort of a tarp or even like scoop her up in the front end of a loader or something and put her on snow or put her up a little bit higher elevation so she wasn't in an icy, slippery parking lot,” said Whitty.
“She suffered for over 24 hours before they came and did something.”
Moose are a common sight in the Ingonish area.