MARLBOROUGH – A moose spotted in the backyards of Marlborough residents has been successfully tranquilized and transported out of the city, officials say.
The moose, which was initially spotted on Feb. 20 at Ghiloni Nature Trail and State Forest, made its way over a mile to residences on Essex St., Church St. and Shawmut Ave on Tuesday.
He had been transported to an “undisclosed rural location” as of 1:50 p.m. according to a social media post by the Massachusetts Environmental Police.
Residents share their thoughts
Though it created a stir on Tuesday, Jennifer Bastien said she was the person who spotted the moose at Ghiloni Park two days earlier, on Sunday.
“I was shocked at first, and then we had our moment of panic,” Bastien said.
Bastien, who hosts a monthly ‘Get Outdoors’ program for local Girl Scouts, was working with her scouts on a scavenger hunt to locate squirrels and different species of birds.
“Surprisingly, we didn’t find any of the animals on the scavenger hunt,” said Bastien. “It just seems like a juxtaposition of [how] there should not be a moose here in an urban area.”
Bastien, who hikes frequently, said that, though she has seen bears, wolves and other animals, she had never seen a moose.
“It doesn’t seem real, it’s very exciting,” said Bastien.
The moose continued to wander particularly on Tuesday morning, making its way to Church St., and moving through the backyard of resident Lindsay Alers.
“Had I not seen that [Bastien’s] post, I think I would have thought I was out of my mind,” Alers said. “I grabbed my dog who was with me and ran into the house.”
Alers noted that the moose appeared “very lost,” and it had a “‘Where the heck am I’ way about it.”
Alers recalled feeling in shock and awe after the moose wandered into her backyard.
“I stayed within two arms length of the door in case I needed to run inside,” she said.
Marlborough Police established a perimeter around the moose after fielding reports around 8 a.m. that it had been spotted near Shawmut Ave in town. They then notified Massachusetts Environmental Police for assistance.
“The moose was peacefully sedated with a tranquilizer dart and transported to a wooded area well outside of Marlborough where he can find new friends,” the Marlborough Police Department noted in a statement posted on Facebook. “We would like to thank the MA Environmental Police for their assistance.”
“Everyone is safe, including the moose,” they continued.
Marlborough Police, indeed, worked in conjunction with the Massachusetts Environmental Police’s Large Animal Response Team (LART), which consists of MassWildlife biologists and environmental police officers specially trained to work with large animals.
The location of specific wooded area where this moose was sent will not be released, according to MassWildlife Chief of Information and Education Marion Larson.
Moose populations expanding their range
Larson previously told the Community Advocate that recent trends have indicated the moose are now moving further west and further south in the region.
“They’ve expanded their range down from New Hampshire to central Massachusetts,” she said. “It’s been happening since the 1980s.”
“Moose are living and raising young in Worcester County,” she continued.
She said that officials receive reports of moose sightings “all along the 495 corridor,” including places as far east as Sailsbury.