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Moose traveling through Plymouth County, authorities urging caution

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Moose in Plymouth County, IA (2)
Courtesy: Horton Family Tree Stand
Moose in Plymouth County, IA (1)
Courtesy: Natalie Harvey

Plymouth County, IA (KTIV) - Residents in Plymouth County recently spotted an unlikely visitor, a moose!

"It's generating quite a bit of interest from people that are wanting to see a moose in Iowa. It's not an unheard-of occurrence, but it does happen with some routine," said. Doug Chafa, Iowa DNR wildlife biologist.

Chafa said the last time he heard reports of a moose in this region was in the winter of 2015. But even though the moose has brought excitement, the reason for traveling so far, may not be a happy one.

"Oftentimes, these moose that wander south of where their normal range is, it seems they are being affected by a meningeal brain worm," said Chafa.

Chafa said that's a parasite that causes neurological behavioral symptoms, like leaving their natural habitat and often results in death.

Chafa also warns that if you do see the female moose, be extremely careful.

"They can be pretty aggressive, so like any large wildlife, you want to keep your distance from them, you don't want to pressure them or make them feel cornered."

Chafa said he does understand the excitement, and just wants to remind people if you do spot the moose, respect private property laws and don't block traffic.

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Leslie London

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