Locked in Death: Bull Moose Battle to the End


Seeing two members of the deer family square off in an all-out fight is a sight to behold. Occasionally, deer hunters witness two bucks briefly fighting for dominance; usually the lesser of the two leaves with its tail between its legs. But sometimes, truly dominant animals fight violently and a locking of antlers can be irreversible. On a few occasions a whitetail buck has been seen with a rival’s head and antlers locked in his, a testament of rutting fury. One of the rarest displays of lock antlers is described in this OutdoorHub post, which describes the unique happening.

The bull moose locked in death are given new life as rare displays.  There are only two known exhibits of antler-locked moose in the United States and Canada, and they are oddly found in the neighboring states of New Hampshire and Maine.

2-400x266[1]In a rare treat for sportsmen, the two taxidermy exhibits are on display together for the first time at the Fryeburg Fair in western Maine about an hour’s drive west of Portland. Another quirky twist is that both mounts were restored by the same taxidermist, Mark Dufrensne of Natures Reflection Taxidermy in Gray, Maine.

New Hampshire’s exhibit is named “Forever Locked—The Story of the Battling Bull Moose of Fowlertown” and features two huge adult bulls likely locked in battle during a rut in the last days of September of 2003. According to the website foreverlocked.org, the two were unable to separate and eventually succumbed to nature after a period of exhaustion, stress, and no food or water.

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Joe Byers
Joe Byers has more than 1,000 magazine articles in print and is currently a field editor with Whitetail Journal, Predator Xtreme, Whitetails Unlimited, Crossbow Revolution, and African Hunting Journal magazines. He’s spent the last three decades depicting the thrill of the chase and photographing the majesty of all things wild. Byers is a member of the Professional Outdoor Media Association and numerous other professional and conservation organizations.