Alaskans have reported numerous aggressive moose encounters in recent weeks. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game says the trend is not unusual, as now is the time “moose grow tired and cranky from the rigors of a long winter.”

Feeding them increases the chances of an attack, the department said in a release. It’s also illegal.

“Moose are just barely making it through winter right now,” said wildlife biologist Dave Battle. “They’re nutritionally stressed, tired and irritable. We need to keep our distance and by all means resist the temptation to feed them.”

Fish and Game also encourages people to keep their pets away from moose, as Battle notes “moose can act out defensively when they encounter loose dogs.”

Moose with a history of unprovoked attacks will likely be shot by Alaska Department of Fish and Game staff or law enforcement to protect public safety. Those who encounter aggressive moose that pose a threat to the public are encouraged to contact the nearest Fish and Game office.

More on moose safety can be found here.