Alyssa Hewlett was boating off the coast of Nipper’s Harbour in Newfoundland, Canada when she and a man spotted a moose on the cliff’s edge.
In the video she filmed of the moose, the large animal is peering down at the water as if trying to get his footing on the jagged rocks. That’s when Hewlett’s companion proclaims, “He wants to jump!”
A few seconds later, the moose does dive into the ocean head first!
It’s not a graceful dive into the water, it’s more of a plunk that prompts the woman to yell, “Oh no! Is he gone?”
But to both of their surprise (and relief) the moose’s heads pops up above the water and he starts to paddle towards shore.
An expert moose biologist thankfully confirms that the moose wasn’t in serious danger.
Dr. Ronald Moen, a professor of biology at the University of Minnesota (and recipient of the 2016 Distinguished Moose Biologist Award) told Mashable, “The moose probably walked down the cliff-side but could not get back up. Possibly it was foraging although there didn’t look to be much food present. Moose are excellent swimmers, and given how calm the water was it could have found an access point to get back on land.”
Moose are not only great swimmers, they can also hold their breath underwater for a full minute. They have nostrils that act like valves to keep water out, which come in handy when foraging on underwater plants in lakes and rivers like they often do. They also can dive almost 20 feet (6 metres) under the water! It appears this moose didn’t get that memo and took to diving through the air!
This moose isn’t the only animal to take daring dives into water. Watch these wild macaque monkeys dive into a pool.