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The sudden death of a moose at the Chippewa wildlife exhibit is now under investigation.
On Tuesday city officials confirmed that the seven-year-old bull moose at the Chippewa zoo had died unexpectedly overnight Monday. Staff discovered the moose’s body early Tuesday morning, and a veterinarian conducted a post-mortem examination on the animal later that day.
The results are not available at this time.
“We are very sad over the death of this beautiful animal,” said Darrell Matson, general manager of infrastructure and operations in a news release issued to media Tuesday afternoon.
“This moose has been a fixture at the Chippewa Wildlife Exhibit for nearly seven years.”
The animal was brought to the wildlife exhibit by the Ministry of Natural Resources in May 2006 when it was about two weeks old. It had been orphaned after its mother had been struck and killed by a motor vehicle.
The moose received ongoing vet care as required and earlier this summer a veterinarian determined the moose had worms. The city says the condition was a common among moose and caribou in captivity.
The city says the animal had received ample food and water during this time.
The care of this moose was already the focus of media attention earlier this summer after park users began complaining on social media that the animal appeared to be malnourished and mistreated.
“Now that’s one skinny moose,” Jennifer Mendowegan states in a comment on the photo posted on Facebook. “Must be sick. Poor thing.”
Park officials responded by inviting media to the exhibit and detailing the moose’s daily diet.
“He eats all that food every day,” Parks Supervisor Gordon John told tbnewswatch.com in July. “I don’t think he’s starving if he’s cleaning it up. He’s the only one in there. This is the time of year where it is hard on them; it’s hot, it’s wet, there’s lots of bugs.”
The city says more information will be made public once it becomes available.
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