A picture of a moose with deformed hooves in Anchorage has people talking.
A moose with strange hooves was seen crossing the street in Anchorage, Alaska. Alaska State biologist David Battle says southcentral Alaska sometimes is the scene of a very unusual copper deficiency in wildlife.
This deficiency allows the moose’s hooves to grow really quickly. The hooves grow faster than they can be worn down, which naturally occurs in nature. This deformation is commonly referred to as “sleigh hoof,” when the hooves elongate and turn upward.
With such low concentrations of copper in the soil and vegetation, moose with sleigh hoof turn up maybe twice a year in the Anchorage area. Copper is a vital mineral that is needed for proper health in a moose’s diet.
What is the danger to a moose with this hoof deformity? It is thought that the excess hoof material will break off given enough time and won’t harm the moose itself.
The main danger is from possible predators. A moose with sleigh hoof may not be able to escape a predator attack as easily.
To this moose, we wish it well and hopefully its sleigh hooves will be fixed by nature soon.