While I have never made contact with a bear, I am still of the belief that Moose are more dangerous than Bears. I have encountered Moose before on a few occasions, and while I was lucky never to have a disagreement with them, I do know they are capable of easily killing a human being if said human being doesn’t show them the respect they deserve.
This past week, while camping in Algonquin, I had a Moose get his large antlers tangled in my HF antenna wire behind the campsite. It was grunting and trashing. I was concerned and told my wife to get in the Jeep. Luckily he got himself free, and was on his way without incident.
I imagine my neighbor in the site next to us thought I was crazy for being afraid of a Moose. He was asking if it was a Bear. I said, nope, it is worse than that, it is a Moose. He laughed.
Bears are a threat, yes. But they are easy enough to scare off if you are loud and posture, light flares, and throw things. So long as you stand your ground and don’t show that you are afraid, a bear is not likely to attack, and more likely to turn around and go away, unless somehow you are between mother and cub, or near a kill site.
Moose are not as easy to scare off. They are not easily bluffed by noise and posturing. They will charge anything, even a freight train, if they get annoyed enough. An acquaintance of mine tells of a story at an Air Force Base where some moose got on a runway and wouldn’t leave. He said they drove two six wheeler trucks up the runway to try to scare them off, but the moose destroyed BOTH trucks by charging them. I have also heard of Moose charging freight trains. Of course they didn’t win that fight. They will often charge cars and trucks alike on the highways, and cause many deaths in that manner. They have also been known to charge and kill tourists who get too close to them in hopes of trying to get a good picture.
Moose are also sometimes affected with an illness caused by a brain worm which eats their brain, and cause unpredictable and aggressive behavior.
In conclusion, yeah, I would be more scared of a bear, but I know I can likely scare one off. However while Moose are more passive, and generally will not turn on humans, and go about their merry way; when they do decide to attack, there is no stopping them.
This doesn’t mean I shiver in my shorts and cower in fear whenever I see a Moose. No, but I will give them the respect they deserve.