Three orphaned moose calves, named Atlas, Luna, and Callisto, will make their public debut at Northwest Trek Wildlife Park Friday (Jan. 27).
The moose, all born last spring, were rescued after being orphaned in Alaska. They arrived at Northwest Trek in August and have been living off-exhibit and adjusting to their new Eatonville home. “Our veterinarian and animal care team have built strong bonds with these calves, getting to know them as a group and as individuals,” Zoological Curator Marc Heinzman said. “These trusting relationships will help us continue to provide the best possible care for them as they grow up.”
When the calves arrived, they were still dependent on milk and staff bottle-fed them daily.
Now, fully weaned, they are big enough and strong enough to live on their own. “Atlas is a very curious and affectionate boy,” said Jordan Bednarz, one of the keepers who has cared for the calves. “He gets the zoomies and loves to run around.” “Luna was shy at first but now is the first to explore new areas, and is a fast learner,” said Bednarz. “Calli is the smallest, but has the biggest personality,” added Bednarz. “She is quick to let you know exactly what she wants.” Atlas, the male calf, now weighs 500 pounds, with female calves Luna and Callisto weighing 465 pounds and 361 pounds. All three calves are nearly 6 feet tall at the shoulder. Moose are the tallest wild animals in North America, with adults growing up to 1,200 pounds, 10.5 feet long, and 7.5 feet high.
As the young moose explore their new 435-acre home, they will encounter American bison, Roosevelt elk, deer, mountain goats, bighorn sheep, caribou, and trumpeter swans.
“Most people will never see a moose in the wild,” said Heinzman. “We know many of our guests come here specifically hoping to meet a moose. And when they come, they will learn about our moose as well as the actions they can take to help conserve resources and more deeply appreciate all wild animals and wild places.”
Guests to the wildlife park may be able to spot the moose calves from a Wild Drive or Keeper Adventure Tour. Northwest Trek is open from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday through Sunday.