A close encounter with a young, rare white ‘spirit moose‘ in B.C.’s Cariboo region left one resident in awe.
Hattie Deyo from Williams Lake was going for a drive Sunday, March 28, around 1 p.m. because she needed to clear her head.
“I needed some mommy time,” she told Global News, “as I’m sure many moms can relate.”
Deyo was driving along a back road when she spotted the young moose.
“I came around a corner and it was crossing the middle of the road so I had to stop so I didn’t hit it,” she said. “It was right there in my face.”
Deyo said she admitted she didn’t know what it was at first, as it was with an older brown moose and she wasn’t sure what the white moose was.
“It took me a second to realize ‘oh my gosh, I’m actually seeing a white moose’, which is really rare,” she said.
White moose are not albino, as they do not have red eyes. They also occasionally have some colouring on their bodies. Their unique colour is due to a recessive trait called the Armstrong White Gene Strain according to tourism info provided by the Ontario government.
It is not known how many white moose are living in B.C. but the province does have a number of Kermode bears, also known as spirit bears.
White moose are said to bring good luck in Indigenous cultures.
Deyo grew up in a rural area and her dad was a hunting guide so she’s been around wildlife her whole life. However, she said she’d never seen anything like the white moose.
“It just kind of lets you know that even though you think you’ve seen it all, there’s still some wonder left in the world,” she said.
Deyo was able to capture the moose on camera. She showed her husband later that night and then posted it on her Facebook page where it received a huge response.
“People were just really excited to see a moose like that. Just to witness it and see for themselves, a video and a picture, everybody was just really impacted.”