February 07, 2013
Minnesota Calls Off Moose Season Due to Declining Population
By Chad Love
Remember last week's blog post on Minnesota's declining moose population and what it might mean for that state's moose season? Apparently, it means it's being shut down...
From this story on Fox News:
Minnesota canceled the state's 2013 and future moose hunting seasons Wednesday, citing a "precipitous" decline in the moose population. Department of Natural Resources officials said in a news release that their annual aerial survey to estimate Minnesota's moose population was "extremely disappointing." The survey conducted last month pegged the population at 2,760 animals, down from 4,230 last winter. Minnesota's moose numbers were estimated as high as 8,840 in 2006.
Officials say the moose population has been in decline for years, but never at the rate biologists documented this winter. According to the story, although scientists believe Minnesota's small, bulls-only moose hunt has not been a factor in the decline, it should be suspended while researchers try to figure out what's going on. Higher temeperatures, parasites, disease, competition from deer and vegetation changes have all been cited as possible culprits for Minnesota's mysterious moose crash.