A new video that’s making its round on the internet shows exactly what happens when someone makes a cow moose and calf feel threatened.
The video, which was originally posted on Reddit captures a bicyclist being chased by two moose down a paved Alaskan road. The biker holds the camera so we can see the pursuit from their perspective. That, of course, slows them down and allows the angry animals to get dangerously close.
Once the person realizes that the moose are gaining ground, they furiously begin peddling away to make their escape. The video doesn’t show how the story ends, but it made it to Reddit. So we’re assuming the bicyclist got home safely.
Many of the commenters seemed to understand the severity of the situation. Moose can grow to be 7 feet tall at the shoulders and weigh 1,000 pounds. And charging is their main method of protection.
During rutting—or mating—season, which takes place each fall, bull moose can act excessively aggressively thanks to their extra testosterone. They’re also equipped with sharp antlers that they can use to gore predators, other bulls, or bicyclists who are minding their own business.
In the spring and summer, cow moose show extra aggression because they often have new calves to protect, just like the cow in the video. So all year, people need to take precautions when they see the animals in the wild.
“Many charges are ‘bluff’ charges, warning you to stay back and keep your distance,” The Alaska Department of Fish and Game says. “However, you need to take them seriously.”
Moose Encounters are Dangerous But Rare
A couple of people wrote that the biker never should’ve risked looking back and slowing down. While others seriously suggested that he should have jumped into the river.
“Those f**kers are fast and that rail looks pretty solid,” wrote another. “If [you’re] shifting and drop the chain, you’re done. Tough call. Either the best of last decision you make.”
The Department of Fish and Game, however, says that none of those options are best. Instead, if a moose starts charging, a person should stand people something solid, like a wall large boulder, or a tree. And if there are no solid objects around, the person should protect their vital parts and hope for the best.
“If it knocks you down, a moose may continue running or start stomping and kicking with all four feet,” the department shared. “Curl up in a ball, protect your head with your hands and hold still.”
Moose encounters are rare though. So while they strike fear in northerners’ minds, being chased by moose while taking a scenic bike ride is highly unlikely.
“My first time in Alaska I knew moose were going to be an issue,” added a Redditor. “But for real those dudes are brazen. Luckily they’re pretty easy to avoid. Best bet is to just look for moose signs and learn to kind of avoid them.”