‘Wise’ elk freed from ice by father-son team in Sweden

One lucky elk, or moose as they’re also known, in the northern Swedish town of Skansnäs owes big thanks to an unlucky pair of local hunters. Klass Persson and his son David spotted the distressed animal trapped in a frozen river and immediately jumped into action.

Alerted by their dog’s alarmed barks, Persson told local newspaper Västerbottens-Kuriren that at first they thought the dog itself was trapped but upon closer inspection realised the greater predicament.

Recognising the animal weighed far too much for two people to handle—adult elks normally hit a bulky 300 to 300kg—the Persson’s asked another neighbouring father-son team to help out. Persson says that regardless of their willingness to aid the animal, they knew a large part of the rescue would still be entirely reliant on the elk’s perseverance, and bravery.

Persson says the elk could clearly tell the men were trying to do right by the exhausted beast, seeming to awake from a deep slumber and mustering the energy to begin moving when they approached it. Using a chainsaw to chop away restricting ice chunks, the elk’s path was soon clear.

‘The moose was so wise that it understood that it could be helped by man, it was a great experience of nature to see, it was impressive to see how it swam towards us,’ he said, adding the animal wasn’t very shy once out of the water.

This incident has a happy ending as far as we know, and is a testament to the unspoken bond between all living things. Even better, the team’s actions are not a stand-alone case in Sweden. In June a timber buyer inspecting a property noticed a baby elk stranded in a creek, disrobed, and jumped into the freezing water to save the little one.

A few years previously, an elk drunk on fermented apples (not as uncommon event as you’d imagine) got to sleep off its hangover in a residential garden after accidentally crashing into an apple tree.