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Young men rescue moose stuck in Cape Breton ice

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The classic image of a fireman rescuing a kitten from a tree was given a Canadian twist earlier this month. A group of young men put their volunteer firefighting skills to good use when they rescued a moose trapped in slushy ice near northern Cape Breton.

Thanks to ice rescue training some of the boys had as volunteer firefighters, they were able to quickly rescue the struggling moose.

Andrew MacEachern, who first noticed the moose while snow-blowing his driveway, told CTV news, “If we had waited another 20 minutes, I say he wouldn’t have made it. His eyes were pretty red and he was pretty frozen by the time we got him out.”

MacEachern was assisted by a few of his friends who were nearby when he found the struggling moose. Labouring to stay afloat, only the moose’s head was above the slushy ice.

The men used an oar to break up the ice surrounding the moose and placed a rope around its neck. With the rope in place, they began pulling the moose out, cautious they didn’t inflict any harm.

Eventually, the group was able to pull the moose out. The moose suffered only a bloody lip.

“We were soaked when we were done,” says rescuer Dale Dixon. “By the time we were done, we just ventured up and got in somewhere with a heater so we could get warm.”

Now, the community is heralding the boys as heroes.

“[The rescue] made us feel unbelievable…actually made us feel like heroes for once,” says Dixon.

This isn’t the first time humans have rescued wildlife from deadly ice. 

Earlier this winter, two men rescued three deer stranded on a frozen lake in Minnesota.