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Moose Scat Form Reflects Diet

1-16-14 moose scatBiologists estimate that moose defecate anywhere from 13 to 21 times a day. The appearance of moose scat, as well as deer, varies throughout the year. Its form depends in large part on the amount of moisture in the moose’s diet. Summer scat often looks like loose plops, or patties, due to heavy consumption of herbaceous aquatic and semi-aquatic vegetation. As fall approaches and a moose’s diet includes more woody vegetation, its scat consists of clumps of soft pellets. In the dead of winter, when moose are browsing almost exclusively on trees, individual dry pellets are produced. Spring scat is similar to fall scat, as moose are transitioning into a different diet during both of these seasons.

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6 responses

  1. Mary, how big are the winter pellets relative to white-tailed deer?

    January 16, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    • So much bigger that you’d never mistake the two. Moose are roughly 3/4″ long, give or take, and just about as wide. HUGE!

      January 16, 2014 at 4:07 pm

  2. Thank you Utah Phillips, and RIP, unfortunately.
    But…….
    Here is the immortal “Moose Turd Pie” story.

    January 16, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    • That’s great, Tom. I had never heard it before — thanks!

      January 17, 2014 at 2:02 am

  3. Lee Woodworth

    The youngsters in our family will enjoy this, I think.

    Lee

    Sent from my iPad

    >

    January 17, 2014 at 10:26 pm

  4. I know I will never look at pie quite the same again! Thank you for that story! And Mary, thanks for your information. I am enjoying all the info you have given us so that my snowshoe walks can be better informed! I’ve actually seen moose scat in winter and wondered why it appeared to be so much like deers’ pellets. Now I see the difference!

    January 23, 2014 at 3:53 pm

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