Moose In New Zealand: Everything You Need To Know About Them

Last Updated on September 14, 2023 by Amin Tawar

Moose In New Zealand
Moose In New Zealand: Everything You Need To Know About Them

A moose’s unique size and distinguishing paddle-like antlers are sufficient to drive anyone to the end of the earth. However, not long back, these giants were seen in a location you would never anticipate: New Zealand.

Below I’ve explained everything you need to know about the moose in New Zealand, where you can find these massive creatures, and if you can hunt one in New Zealand. 

Are There Any Moose In New Zealand?

The first moose was introduced in New Zealand in 1900 and was freed in the Hokitika Valley region. Just a few of the moose arrived because of the stormy sea journey and they did not even breed a population. The last moose cow that survived was killed in 1908 as it become a pest in local grasslands. 

Later in the year 1910, a second attempt was created to bring back moose to the country. New Zealand reached the Canadian Government to gather ten calves to New Zealand. 

The concept behind the proposal was to build a world-class game account in New Zealand – this ran alongside the import of other gaming animals like Red Deer. The calves were released in Supper Cove. 

In the 1920s, the Government surveyed the moose population to see if they existed. At first, they thought it was thriving but later found that the population has become smaller. They were a common sight in Dusky for around 20 years and the last moose was seen in 1952. Since then, there have been no sightings recorded, despite increasing evidence, including DNA proof in the 2000s.  

How Many Moose In New Zealand?

The exact number of moose population is unclear as the belief that moose wander the most remote areas of New Zealand has been a prolonged urban legend. 

For more than a century these animals have disappeared into the woods. Moose are believed to be near elimination in New Zealand, though there is proof that they may exist.

There have been blurry pictures and stray hairs, and questionable droppings. But, what hasn’t been clear is, the undeniable evidence that the 10 moose still might be roaming in the forest. 

Also, moose are very elusive, and the Fiordland bush is a superb geography for fading. They are quiet and solitary animals that move like shadows.

How Common Is It To See Moose In New Zealand?

Moose In New Zealand
Moose In New Zealand: Everything You Need To Know About Them

No, it is not common to spot a moose in New Zealand as there is no existing population of the species found in the country. Also, it is believed that they only live in the Fiordland bush which is very thick making it difficult to spot one in the area. 

Also Check Our Guide On Moose In America

Where To See Moose In New Zealand? 

Moose were initially released in Fiordland and it is still believed that they exist in the region. Also, a recent spotting of moose was made by two employees near Doubtful Sound. The pilot sitting in the back said that he spotted an animal that no longer exists in the region.

How Big Are Moose In New Zealand?

In New Zealand, the Canadian moose that is fully developed can be up to 6ft tall at shoulder levels and weigh around 700-1400 lbs.

Only male moose have antlers, that vary about 160 cm across and weigh about 20 kg (44 lbs) with a wide, flattened palmate body. They might be roughly around the size of a huge horse, with big, sprawling antlers. Calves weigh about 15 kg (33 lbs) at birth and quickly grow. 

Can You Hunt Moose In New Zealand?

Only three moose awards were ever received in New Zealand, of which two were shot by Hunter Ethne J. Herrick. The first ever bull moose was killed under a license, in the year 1929. In about 1934, he shot an old three-legged moose in the Hilda Burn. This cow was probably the one that broke its leg when it tipped during the original release in the year 1905! 

Also Check Our Guide On Moose In New York


And that was everything you need to know about the moose in New Zealand. I hope this article answered all your queries.

Thank You For Reading!

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