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Encounters with moose not rare in Grand Forks area

A bull moose stands out on the North Dakota prairie in October 2015. The risk of moose-vehicle collisions peaks during the fall mating season, when moose are on the move and at their most active. (Photo/ North Dakota Game and Fish Department)

Fall is the most dangerous time of year for moose-vehicle collisions, as animals are on the move and at their most active during the mating season.

That's something to keep in mind when driving this time of year, especially after dark, in the wake of an accident Sunday night in which a motorist hit and killed a moose on U.S. Highway 2 about 3 miles west of Emerado, N.D.

The dark-colored moose are especially difficult to see at night because they blend in so well with their surroundings.

While not a routine occurrence, moose sightings and encounters aren't exactly rare in the Grand Forks area and other parts of northeast North Dakota, either. Here's a look at some of the more memorable moose encounters that have occurred in recent years as found in the Herald archives. There likely have been others, as well, but these were the first encounters to show up in a search.

• June 2018: Two people were injured near Manvel, N.D., after hitting a moose on U.S. Highway 81 near the intersection with 20th Street Northeast. Sgt. Adam Dvorak of the North Dakota Highway Patrol Northeast Region office in Grand Forks said troopers in the region come across moose about once a month, on average, and the department receives reports of about two moose collisions a year in the Northeast Region. That number has held steady in his 16 years with the department, Dvorak said in a story published in the June 17, 2018, edition of the Herald. Stories about the moose collision are available here and here

October 2017: Blake Riewer, district game warden for the North Dakota Game and Fish Department in Grand Forks, helped Grand Forks County sheriff's deputies chase away a moose on the Grand Sky property near Grand Forks Air Force Base. The young bull moose was no worse for wear as it headed south toward Emerado, N.D.

• November 2013: The North Dakota Game and Fish Department was offering a reward of up to $1,000 for information on the killing of an adult cow moose shot and left south of Arvilla, N.D.

• May 31, 2003: A moose crashed through the door and into the living room of a Grand Forks home, causing an estimated $700 worth of damage before exiting the house. Police for the next half hour tracked the moose, which last was seen crossing the Red River into East Grand Forks, according to the Sunday, June 1, 2003, edition of the Herald. Several other people had reported seeing the moose in other parts of town earlier in the morning before it crashed into the house of the surprised residents.

• Dec. 28, 2000: A full-grown cow moose spent several hours trotting along the inner fence line at American Crystal Sugar in East Grand Forks, attracting the attention of motorists. The cow moose last was seen about 4:20 p.m., wandering east along U.S. Highway 2.

• Late 1990s: A young bull moose spent several hours bedded down near Altru Hospital before being escorted out of town by animal warden Will Speaker and officer LaVonne Nelson. Speaker recalled the encounter in a story about his retirement published Aug. 28, 2009.

Brad Dokken

Brad Dokken is a reporter and editor of the Herald's Sunday Northland Outdoors pages. Dokken joined the Herald company in November 1985 as a copy editor for Agweek magazine and joined the Herald staff in 1989. He worked as a copy editor in the features and news departments before becoming outdoors editor in 1998.  A Roseau, Minn., native, Dokken is a graduate of Bemidji State University. 

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