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Remember Wildlife Safety on Halloween

Halloween is a fun time for children and families, but it’s also an important time to consider wildlife safety.

When trick-or-treating with children, please be alert and keep in mind Anchorage is also home to wildlife.

Moose can be particularly dangerous if children are out walking through neighborhoods after dark.

Costumes can obscure vision, and children and parents may accidentally run across moose or other wildlife.

Carry a flashlight, scan the sides of the road and wooded areas, and always keep a safe distance from all wildlife.

While moose are not normally aggressive, they can become dangerous if they feel cornered or threatened. Don’t ever try to walk past a moose or make it move. Take a different route, or wait until the moose moves a safe distance away. If a moose charges you, run and hide behind something solid, like a tree. Moose also enjoy eating pumpkins, so after Halloween, promptly dispose of Jack-O-Lanterns so they won’t attract moose.

While some bears are already in dens for the winter, others are still active. Some Anchorage neighborhoods are continuing to experience bear activity with bears raiding chicken coops or getting into garbage.

Here are some safety tips to consider:

  • Parents should accompany young kids while trick-or-treating.
  • Older kids, if not accompanied by an adult, should always stay in groups.
  • Have fun as a group and always make noise.
  • Stay together.
  • Carry a flashlight.
  • Never cut through wooded or brushy areas.
  • If a moose or bear is seen, alert others to its presence.

Bear sightings can be reported to ADF&G, 267-2257, during business hours.

For wildlife problems outside of business hours, call the Alaska State Trooper Dispatch, 352-5401, or the Anchorage Police Department, 786-8500.

For more information on moose safety, including a movie about moose safety made for kids, visit www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=livewith.moose.

For detailed information on bear safety including a coloring book on bear safety for children, visit www.alaskabears.alaska.gov.

For highlights and features on Alaska's wildlife and fish, see our online magazine, Alaska Fish and Wildlife News at www.wildlifenews.alaska.gov

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