Alaska moose, Denali National Park, Alaska, USA
© Yva Momatiuk and John Eastcott/Minden Picture
The Alaska moose is a subspecies of moose that ranges from Alaska to western Yukon. As the largest subspecies of moose and the tallest land animal in North America, the male Alaska moose can be as tall as 2.1 metres at the shoulder and can weigh over 635 kilograms. Its antlers average nearly two metres across. In fact, it’s so large that it’s sometimes called the giant moose.
After months of eating, roaming and avoiding predators, Alaska moose spend the Northern Hemisphere autumn trying to propagate the species during what is called the rutting season, which runs from late August to early October. Males will mark their scent on trees to attract females and fight other bulls for access to female moose, called cows. Fights between bulls can sometimes be fatal, and occasionally a bull will skip the rut if it loses a fight. Virtually all cows have only one mate per year, but bulls can mate with 25 cows over a 12-month period.