A moose calf is getting a second chance after it was found wandering along a highway just south of Sudbury with no mother in sight.
Last month, the calf was admitted to Wild at Heart, a wildlife refuge centre in Lively, just outside of Sudbury, Ont. The centre’s animal care supervisor, Alicia Irwin, said that the calf looked as if it was newly born because the umbilical cord was still attached and the calf was wet with fluids from the birth.
“He was probably about two days old, but he was good,” said Irwin in an interview with the CBC. “He was vocalizing. His legs were pretty wobbly but he was doing pretty good.”
The calf has since been named Jessie. At the centre, Jessie is drinking around two litres of formula every day, plus specialized moose pellet feed, and a mix of poplar and willow leaves.
Calves form a very close bond with their mothers, so the staff is caring for Jessie 24/7. On Facebook, the centre wrote, “If moose calves become lonely or depressed, they refuse to eat and seem to lose the will to live, which is why we give such intensive care for them.”
Despite the calf’s rocky start, Irwin says Jessie is doing well at the centre – even going for daily walks.
“They’re in a critical period for the first three months,” said Irwin. “They’re really susceptible to infection, so, I don’t want to be too optimistic but he’s doing really well right now.”
Last, Wild at Heart brought in another orphaned moose, Lilo. The calf was struggling with an umbilical cord infection and was very small, but she’s in good company. Lilo and Jessie have become good friends.