There was one time when we were hiding behind a big rock and witnessed a bear attacking a moose calf.
It was frightening to see the power of a bear in action. Unfortunately, we did not have the camera with us that time.
We struggle through swamps and stumble over fallen old trees in our quest to find moose droppings. Often, we have to walk very far.
It's all about finding the places where the moose have been feeding during the winter.
Picking moose droppings is fun.
It´s a bit like picking mushrooms, but after a whole day of picking moose droppings, we have a heavy load to bring back home.
You can tell from looking at the moose droppings if it was left by a cow or a bull.
The female droppings are smaller and pointed, while the male droppings are bigger and rather round.
To find food during the winter when the snow lies deep, the moose have to eat plants and bark that stick up above the snow.
Those plants contain pure cellulose and cellulose is the raw material paper is made of.
During the summer and autumn the moose droppings are not suitable for paper making because they eat grass and herbs that do not contain cellulose.
It’s easy to get lost in the forest when we wander around with our eyes continuously on the ground. Before we now it, we can be lost.
We have been lost several times.
One time when we were searching for moose droppings, we could not agree on which direction we should walk to get home.
After a couple of hours we realized that we where walking in circles.
A big bull suddenly dashed right towards us! We screamed and ran for our lives. Thankfully, the bull took off in a different direction.
Finally, after walking for many hours and with the daylight fading we found a road that led us home.
After this incident, we invested in a GPS to be able to find our way home safely.
Once a cow chased us while defending her calf. We had been caught between the mother and the calf without noticing. The cow laid her ears back and started to snort and stomp with her front legs before attacking us, and once again we ran like chickens!
We are not the bravest women on earth!
We lay the moose droppings on the floor of the barn to let them dry for several weeks before we start making paper.
It is a time consuming and rather messy process, but when the paper begins to dry in the sun and the beautiful texture appears, it is worth every minute of the hard work.
We live close to the Arctic Circle in northern Sweden, and we have sunlight almost 24 hours a day during the short summer. However, we only get to see the sun a couple of hours a day during the long winter
When the season for picking moose droppings is over, we search for new picture ideas for our paintings on the Moose Paper.
One autumn I saw a bull who was building a rut pit.
He trampled the bottom of the pit very carefully.
Then he urinated in the pit and rolled himself in the mixture of urine and sex pheromones, all to attract the cow that had been standing close by, watching him.
Suddenly her 1-year-old calf stepped into the pit and urinated, too.
The bull was furious! All his work with the rut pit was ruined! He brutally chased the calf away, but unfortunately the cow ran as well. There he stood - a lonely bull without cow and a ruined rut pit.
I almost felt sorry for him.
My father once got to see a bull trying to mate with a female moose. A younger bull came and gorged the mating bull on his rear end.
The big bull had to stop his courtship to chase the intruder away.
This scenario repeated itself for over an hour.
It was a cold night, but my father could not leave the spectacular scene, despite freezing really badly.
It's not every day you get the opportunity to see something like that.
Searching for moose droppings in the forest is a time-consuming job, but when we summarize at the end of the day, something new or exciting happens every day. Not everyone is as fortunate as we are, having the nature around the corner and the moose wander near by.
Our philosophy is to work with nature on nature’s own terms.