The BDN wants your moose tales; here’s how to submit them

Bright and early Monday morning, hunters will head into the woods in eight of the state’s Wildlife Management Districts in search of moose. The six-day session is the first of the season, and 840 permit-holders will be allowed to take a bull moose. Other sessions will follow in October and November, with a total of 3,725 permits allotted this season.

A close encounter with a Maine moose.

If you’re among those hunters — or if you’re tagging along for moral support (or to cook, scout, or help drag the moose out of the woods — we want to hear from you.

Many BDN readers love to hear stories about successful hunting trips. And we love to share those tales, both in our printed edition and on the web at

Not sure if you have a story worth sharing? Well, here are some questions to answer: Was your moose, or its antlers, particularly large? Was the hunter a junior, on their first hunt, or a senior, on a hunt that they’ve always wanted to take? Did you encounter unexpected difficulty, or take a moose in a particularly memorable way? Did the hunt have special significance to you and your family or hunting pals?

If you come out of the woods next week and answer “Yes” to any of those questions, you may have a story that our readers will want to hear.

A few tips: Take plenty of photos, and make the photos as uncluttered as possible. Move your trailer. We don’t care what kind of truck you drive. Move all your boxes of equipment. And for god’s sake, don’t take a photo of your moose when cousin Jasper’s relieving himself on a nearby tree, and in the photo. (Before you ask, yes, something similar has happened in the past; we ended up running a rather odd-shaped photo after cropping Jasper — or whatever his name was — out of the shot).

Other things to consider:  While blood and guts are part of the hunting equation, the less of both in photos submitted for publication, the better. It’s possible to capture tasteful “trophy shots” without gratuitous gore. And your photo has a better chance of getting in front of our readers if we’re confident that those readers won’t retch into their cornflakes when they see the shot.

Move close to the target … don’t rely on your zoom. Make sure you know everyone who’s in the photo, and can spell all of their names correctly. Then do so. And when you submit photos, make sure that everyone in the photo played a role in the hunt. Staging a photo of your great-grand-nephew sitting on Secretariat-the-fallen-moose’s back might be good for a few chuckles at Thanksgiving dinner, but won’t make the cut here.

Then, write a few lines. A few paragraphs are best. Tell us why the hunt was special. Include important details. Leave out unimportant ones.

We’ve all had to compose a few essays in our day, and it might seem like the concept of “important details” would be self-explanatory, but years of reading submissions has taught me it’s not quite that simple.

So here’s what we need: Who was there? Where were you? How big was the moose? Why was your hunt special, or memorable, or newsworthy?

And here’s what we don’t need (you’d be surprised how many essays begin with this chaff): What you had for breakfast. A recounting of every piece of gear you took with you. How many stops you had before you made it into the woods. What you had for lunch. What you had for a snack. What you had for dinner.

You can send your moose stories to me at

There’s also a link on our website where you can submit your own photos, if that’s all you’d like to do.

Snail-mailers can send information to me, care of the Bangor Daily News, PO Box 1329, Bangor, 04402-1329.

To everyone taking part in the Maine moose hunt this year, congratulations. Have a great and safe hunt.

And when you get back, drop us a line and tell us all about your trip.



John Holyoke

About John Holyoke

John Holyoke has been enjoying himself in Maine's great outdoors since he was a kid. Today, he's the Outdoors editor for the BDN, a job that allows him to meet up with Maine outdoors enthusiasts in their natural habitat. The stories he gathers provide fodder for his columns, and this blog.