Alex Larrabee of Deer Isle has put together an impressive resume as a hunter.
He has harvested several turkeys, eight deer and three black bears in recent years, some of those using a crossbow.
This year, he secured the bragging rights for his family when he achieved a difficult accomplishment. He successfully shot a turkey, deer, bear and moose, completing a “Maine Big Game Grand Slam.”
He’s also 10 years old.
Alex got an early start hunting under the guidance of his dad, Jason Larrabee. He shot his first deer, a doe, when he was 4.
“He definitely does all his hunting with his dad,” said Alex’s mom, Melinda Larrabee. “They do everything together and Jason’s just come to know that he lets Alex have it all.”
Coming into 2022, Alex had registered a “triple play” — deer, turkey and bear — on three previous occasions. This time, after being drawn for a moose permit, he took it a step further.
Melinda Larrabee said Alex seems to have a knack for making things happen in the woods, in addition to being a good shot.
Alex harvested his turkey in the spring, then moved on to his bear. The Larrabees, who own a camp in Island Falls, hired guide Travis Willette of Silver Ridge Outfitters for the hunt.
With a turkey already in the bag and a moose permit in his pocket, Alex wasn’t about to be too choosy.
“He said I don’t care what size it is. I’m just taking the first one that walks out,” his mother said.
Mission accomplished. The 138-pound bear taken on Youth Bear Day meant no missed school for Alex and no time off from work for his parents.
He’s the only hunting family member to have harvested a bear.
Alex set out on Youth Deer Day to check off the third piece of his grand slam. He took a 115-pound seven-pointer with his crossbow.
“That’s the biggest one he’s got. He keeps working his way up,” Melinda Larrabee said of the antlers.
The final piece of the grand slam would be a moose. Alex had a cow permit for Wildlife Management District 6, in Aroostook County.
And he already had some moose hunting experience, albeit as an observer. Last year, Jason Larrabee was the sub-permittee for a friend, and Alex was invited to tag along.
Conditions during his own moose hunt were difficult, with unseasonably warm temperatures. It proved to be the toughest challenge of the four hunts.
The Larrabees hunted from sunup to sundown with Mark Lawler of Dudley Brook Guide Service. It all came together on Wednesday. “We shot it, then we had to go chase it,” Alex said.
Before they could begin getting the moose out of the cut, in the pouring rain, there was a small problem.
“We lost the moose,” Alex said with a laugh.
“We were going to the truck to get our sweatshirts and jackets, then dad’s phone died and we got lost,” he said.
However, they did find the moose, and met up with Melinda Larrabee and Lawler for the three-hour extraction process.
Further proving his knack for hunting, Alex also predicted the dressed weight of the moose.
“I said 670 pounds and it was,” Alex said.
“Right on the money,” Melinda Larrabee added.
Everyone in the Larrabee family hunts, including Alex’s brother Brayden, 11, and sister Sierra, 14.
But there’s one title Alex doesn’t own — yet.
Melinda Larrabee’s 220-pound buck, shot in The Forks, is the biggest taken by anyone in the family to date.
“I’m the only one in the house that has the ‘Biggest Bucks in Maine’ patch,” she said of the distinction provided by The Maine Sportsman to hunters who harvest a deer that weighs at least 200 pounds.
With Alex around, it’s a record that could soon well be broken.
Correction: An earlier version of this report misstated the number of deer Alex Larrabee has successfully hunted.