No Moose Hunt for Michigan Yet

At the May 9 Natural Resources Commission meeting in Roscommon, Wildlife Division researcher Dean Beyer presented the Moose Population Survey results. The current moose range (outside of Isle Royale) has been identified as 1,400 square miles in the Western Upper Peninsula (core range) and 1,200 sq. mi. in the Central Eastern end.

The 2013 Moose Survey (January -February) was conducted this winter, which surveyed all 29 high density plots and 14 of 28 low density plots and counted 187 moose in the Western U.P. Based on the model, this indicates that there are an estimated 451 moose (+/- 24% CI) in Western UP, up from 433 in 2010. The Eastern range is not surveyed, but it is believed that there are less than 100 moose in that area.

From 1996 to 2006, the growth rate of moose was 8-10%, however it appears that more recently this population growth has slowed to 2% growth from 2010-2013.

More significant moose declines are being seen in Minnesota likely due to the moose’s poor adaptation to warmer temperatures. Minnesota¬† has now closed its hunting season in both of its management areas.

After the moose was named a game species in Michigan in 2010 by the Michigan Legislature, the Moose Hunting Advisory Council (created by the legislation) recommended a hunt only when annual growth was greater than or equal to 3% and that hunt be limited to the core range.  Due to the slow population growth of 2%, a season is not recommended by the DNR at this time and the NRC is not implementing one.

This is Proposal G in action, folks.

  • Mike Hutchens

    This is how biological management is supposed to work, not by political organizations taking the decision making out of the hands of scientists and putting it in the hands of emotional voters.

    • NormMackey

      Yep, this is how biological management is supposed to work,unlike the wolf management where the NRC uses the mere possibility of an overcount of wolves in 2011 and an undercount in 2013 as an excuse to ignore the actual data gathered, and ignores the equal likelihood of an undercount in 2011 and overcount in 2013 hiding an actual larger drop in wolf population than the 2%/year measured. By the same logic a moose hunt would be indicated.

      • MHutch

        NO Norm, you are completely off base. Biological managements means you manage through Biology ALL THE TIME not just when the biology fits your agenda. You can not support biology when the results matched your preconceived ideas and be opposed to it when the data supports an alternate action.

        • NormMackey

          That’s exactly what I wrote.

  • John Caretti

    “Proposal G in action”

    Yep! It sure is. When the population can support it- then it will be time. I’m concerned what the wolves are going to do to them.

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