According to King 5,Washington’s Mount Rainier National Park in Lewis County had their first ever moose sighting yesterday, which is also the southwestern part of the state’s first moose sighting as well.
The Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife also said that the farthest south a moose was seen in Washington before was west of Stevens Pass in 2009.
Back in August, a moose was seen on the I-90 undercrossing at Resort Creek, southwest of Snoqualmie Pass, and another moose was spotted near the same location back in September.
The National Park Service says the moose seen near Mount Rainier may be the same one.
In 2015, there were an estimated 5,000 moose in Washington state, with most residing in the Selkirk Mountains in Pend Oreille, Stevens, Ferry, and Spokane counties, and smaller populations in the north Cascades, Okanogan, and the Blue Mountains.
Moose have typically been known to wander farther south on the eastern part of the state, like the high desert of the Columbia Basin, but never in the southwestern part of the state.
Moose typically prefer habits with heavily wooded areas with lakes, marshes, and other wetlands.
Adult moose measure up to six feet at the shoulder, with males typically weighing between 850 to 1,100 pounds, and females weigh anywhere between 600 and 800 pounds, says the WDFW.