MARLBOROUGH – Several Marlborough residents saw an unexpected visitor wander through their yards on Tuesday morning as a moose made its way through town.
The sighting prompted a response from state and local officials, who were on scene in the area of Church Street as of 9 a.m. according to MassWildlife chief of information and education, Marion Larson.
MassWildlife urged residents to avoid searching for the moose during their response.
“When people hear about it they want to come see what’s going on, which makes our job harder,” Larson told the Community Advocate. “There’s enough stress going on, we do not want people to come in the area to be a distraction.”
Community members shared photos and videos of the moose on social media throughout the morning on Tuesday.
Larson noted just after 10 a.m. that the preliminary plan is to relocate the moose for its safety and the safety of residents.
“Based on the information that I’ve been alerted to, it would appear the plan is to try to safely immobilize the moose and move it to a more suitable location,” Larson said.
Moose have historically roamed across Massachusetts. But their populations dwindled in the early 1700s due to hunting and extensive deforestation.
Trends have indicated the moose are now moving further west and further south in the region, according to Larson.
“They’ve expanded their range down from New Hampshire to central Massachetts,” Larson 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.
Marlborough Animal Control and the Marlborough Conservation Commission were unavailable for comment at the time of reporting.