If a docile baby moose walked up to your door and allowed you to pet and feed it without causing any disturbance, this would be an amazing moment. In the social media age, many people would film it and then upload that video online. This is exactly what 43-year-old Angel Bunch did over the weekend. But her amazing moment with nature would end in her arrest and a dead moose — killed by the police.
Bunch posted the video on Saturday and, apparently, one of her “see something, say something” neighbors was alarmed over the video of Bunch giving a carrot to a baby moose while petting it. So, they reported her to the police, who quickly showed up.
A spokesperson for the Alaskan State Troopers, Austin McDaniel explained that feeding a moose, even a baby one, creates a public health risk.
“When Alaska Wildlife Troopers responded to Bunch’s residence the moose showed no apparent fear of humans and walked up to the Wildlife Trooper when he arrived,” McDaniel said over email to the Anchorage Daily News. “This moose appeared thin and showed signs that it had been fed by humans for some time.”
Because it relied on humans for food, the moose was deemed a threat and targeted for extermination.
“When humans feed wildlife it causes them to stop searching and feeding on their own in nature and rely solely on humans for food,” McDaniel wrote. “When their human food source stops the animal can become aggressive towards other humans as it looks for food from them.”
While this is certainly possible, bears, which pose a threat as well, are often times simply tranquilized and moved to other areas of the state when they become too dependent on humans. This could have been done with the moose.