New Questions About Vermont Drowning Death of Moose

A state biologist says it’s possible the animal was suffering from an infection that affected its decision-making

There are new questions about the health of a moose that died in an unusual way this weekend in Vermont, but the full truth around its death will never be known.

Tuesday, necn told you how a moose drowned in Lake Champlain on Saturday, off South Hero, after swimming across the lake from northern New York.

The game warden for the area said people who gathered near the shore at the bike path to take cell phone photos and videos apparently scared the exhausted moose back into the water, where it was too tired to fight the waves on the lake and drowned.

Now, a state biologist has offered a different theory: suggesting the animal might have been suffering from a brain parasite known as brain worm that would have affected its decision-making.

However, the answer about the moose’s health will never be known for sure, because a lab test that would confirm the infection will not be conducted. The moose carcass was already disposed of, with the animal’s meat donated to agencies that help feed hungry families.

Wildlife experts from the Vermont Department of Fish & Wildlife said Wednesday that regardless of whether the animal was sick or perfectly healthy, it was not the best course of action for people to gather around it and take pictures.

Instead, the department said people should respect wild animals by giving them plenty of room, so they feel comfortable, and by moving along quickly after coming across wildlife. The department said doing so will help avoid spooking an animal and be better for the safety of both animals and humans.

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