Welcome to Mammal Hall in the Springfield Science Museum!
The North American Moose is a Mammal. Mammals have some distinct characteristics. Most mammals have hair or fur, are warm blooded, give live birth, breath air through lungs, mothers produce milk, and have seven vertebrae in the neck. Moose are also Herbivores and prefer to eat plants such as the water lily. This species of moose is found in the northern sections of North America including the United States, Canada and Alaska.
A male Moose is referred to as a Bull Moose. The Bull Moose is a very large animal and can grow up to 7 feet tall at the shoulders, weigh well over 1000 pounds and typically lives around 25 years. A female Moose is called a Cow Moose and is slightly smaller than a Bull Moose. A baby Moose is called a Calf, and are typically born in late Spring.
Moose are the largest member of the deer family. They have large antlers which can weigh up to 40 pounds, and measure up to six feet wide. Only the Bull Moose has antlers.
These antlers are used for fighting with other males and are used for attraction during mating season which is typically in early fall. After mating season is over, their antlers will shed or fall off. Once antlers are shed in the fall they become a food source for many small mammals such as the porcupine, and are a good source of minerals.
Antlers differ from horns. Antlers are shed or fall off each year and regrow, whereas horns are not shed.
Joel Cummings is a science docent at the Springfield Museums.