Moose and Caribou Hunting Quiz

Nathan Chandler

Moose are huge, goofy-looking animals. They are a kind of deer.

Both moose and caribou are species of deer. The moose, of course, is the biggest of the entire North American deer family.

If you see a moose after the sun has set and it's dark, what should you do?

Once the sun has set, moose often stick around in the same area until morning. If you return before first light, you may well get a good shot at the animal.

With regards to success rates, how does caribou hunting compare to whitetail deer hunting?

Caribou wander the open tundra in massive numbers. With an intelligent guide, you should be able to bag a sizeable animal much sooner than you would a whitetail.

What's one thing you absolutely do before you do any sort of big game hunting?

Many hunters (like many Americans in general) neglect their physical conditioning until it's too late. Just a bit of cardio and strength work will make your hunts more enjoyable, and safer, too.

Moose use the same bedding areas year after year.

Moose are creatures of habit. Provided they haven't been disturbed, they'll use the same bedding areas for years.

How do most hunters access the areas frequented by caribou?

Caribou herds are found mostly in remote tundra areas best accessed by bush planes. That means you'll take a bumpy (but fun) ride into the wilderness to reach your prey.

What is typical moose behavior?

Unlike whitetail deer, moose are solitary creatures. They mostly hang out alone or in very small groups.

What technique do hunters use to kill caribou?

Hunters spend hours or days scanning the horizon for signs of caribou. When they spot their prey, they slowly stalk the animals, hoping that they can get close enough for a clean shot.

Caribou are found in the Lower 48 part of the United States.

In the Lower 48, caribou are found in small numbers in three states -- Montana, Idaho and Minnesota. But their numbers are much greater in the lands farther north.

Caribou migrate in massive numbers. How do their migration routes change from year to year?

Caribou herds tend to use the exact same migration paths each year. Armed with that knowledge, guides set up their clients near the ancient paths.

For the best caribou hunting opportunity, it's often best to set up where?

Water crossings tend to focus the animals into a specific area. They are good locations to help you set up and stalk the animals.

During the moose breeding season, you may want to focus your efforts on which area?

Cows typically hang out near ponds and lakes during the breeding season. That means the bulls will show up sooner or later, too.

Wear brand-new boots for your moose or caribou hunt.

Don't be nuts -- break in your boots before your big hunt. Otherwise, your feet may give out long before you even lay eyes on your prey.

Why do you need a very good backpack when you're hunting caribou?

In many places, you'll have to lug the meat until you reach the bush plane's landing site. A good pack can make this task easier. A low-quality pack, however, can make it an agonizing ordeal that you never want to repeat.

Compared with whitetail deer hunting, how should bowhunters practice for a caribou hunt?

Compared with whitetails, it's typically harder for bowhunters to get close to caribou. You should practice shooting targets at greater distances if you want to succeed.

In the early moose season, where should you hunt?

In the early season, moose tend to spend most of their time at higher elevations. That means you should be prepared to go higher if you really want a good shot at filling your tag.

Compared with whitetail hunting, you need what sort of bow to take down a caribou?

Caribou appear huge, especially on the open tundra. But in most cases, your whitetail bow is more than adequate to make a clean kill.

You should put in serious practice time with your spotting scope or binoculars before a hunt.

Binoculars and spotting scopes are indispensable tools for big game hunters, but many people take these optical devices for granted. If you don't practice at home, you'll never be able to focus on moving animals during a hunt.

In some areas, caribou hunters are required to use WHAT?

Some jurisdictions require that hunters use guides as part of the trip. In some other places, such as Alaska, even non-residents are allowed to hunt caribou without a guide.

If you don't see any caribou, what should you do?

Caribou hunting can seriously test the patience of any hunter. If you don't see any herds, you'll likely have to wait until one wanders closer before you have any realistic chance of reaching an animal with your weapon.

You should set up your camp near your eventual caribou hunting location.

All deer have a great sense of smell and good hearing, too. If you set up camp near your hunting spot, you're asking to get skunked.

You'll have better success moose hunting if you stick to what sort of area?

Moose are very sensitive to hunting pressure. You'll have far more success if you expend your energy in areas where other hunters don't.

The Boone and Crockett Club recognizes how many subspecies of caribou in North America?

The Boone and Crockett Club recognizes five subspecies of caribou. No matter the species, most hunting seasons begin in August and end in October.

As temperatures begin to exceed about 65 degrees Fahrenheit, you should follow moose where?

Moose don't like warm temperatures. They retreat into deep, dark woods as the weather warms, so you'll have to be prepared to follow them.

Which caribou species tends to produce the largest animals?

The Alaska-Yukon Barren Ground Caribou tends to reach the largest size of any of the five species. The bulls are around the size of a bull elk.

What does it mean if a moose's ears are flattened?

If you see a moose with flattened ears and raised neck hair, you're facing an angry or agitated animal. Be sure to take the appropriate precautions or risk serious bodily harm.

Caribou hunting takes time and money. You'll spend at least how much for a guided hunt?

At $7,000 or so, a guided caribou hunt means you need serious disposable income. In spite of that price tag, these hunts are a bargain compared to some other big game pursuits.

Why does a compass or GPS device become a necessary tool during late season moose hunting?

As the season wears on, moose go deeper and deeper into the wilderness. That means you need tools to help you find your way home, otherwise, you risk losing your way in the dense forest.

Because caribou hunting happens on open tundra, you don't really need a compass.

The northern tundra is a vast and wild place, and its open vistas can confuse even people with extensive outdoors experience. A compass or GPS unit is necessary and could save your life.

If you see a herd of caribou migrating away from you, what should you do?

Migrating caribou look like they are just walking or trotting, but they move much more quickly than humans can walk or run. Your only hope is to wait for another herd or hope the one you're watching changes course.

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About This Quiz

If you tend to get buck fever thinking about whitetail hunting, your heart probably races at the idea of stalking moose and caribou. These huge animals lure hunters from all over the world. How much do you know about moose and caribou hunting?

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