Mark McNay

 

Opening statement indicated with 1400-1500 moose, a population of 50-60 wolves is about normal across the state.

 

Presented moose population modeling.

Cautioned on use of models as showing what may happen, not what will happen.

Model is a tool depending on quality of input data.

Indicated black bear as significant in moose predation. Studies show male black bear main predator on moose calves.

For 19D used moose population of 1400 and wolves at 50, with black bear taking 40% of calves, grizzly bear take 5%, and wolves at 11%

Projections show that if packs totally removed get same projection as maintaining number at 20 wolves.

 

Projections to year 2016 without any management actions show stable population at about 1300.

If total harvest were 90 bulls and 5 cows, population remains consistent.

Change from 50 to 100 wolves does not alter population projections.

Allowing for weather did not significantly affect population.

 

Projections to year 2016 with 5 years of wolves reduced to 20 and harvest remaining at 90 showed moose population increase of 5-6% reaching maximum of 1800 in 2012 then declining as wolf population increase. Expected to return to 1300 and again remain stable. Suggested small increase not likely to be significant and may not be recognized by hunters.

 

Projections to year 2016 with 5 years of wolves reduced to 20 and human harvest reduced to 0 shows moose population reaching 2500 by 2012 then declining as wolf and human harvest reintroduced. Population expected to again return to approximately 1300.

 

Projections to year 2016 with 10 years of wolf control and no reduction in hunting show peak of 2700 moose in 2015 then starting decline as wolf population increases. Population expected to again return to approximately 1300.

 

Multiple projections to 2016 with 10 years of wolf control and no change in human harvest, but allowing for weather influence show population ranges from 1500 to 3700, with mean about 2200 in year 2016 then declining.

 

 

 

 

Projections to year 2016 with 10 years of wolf control and human harvest reduced to 0 shows moose population climbing to 3750 by year 2015. Discussion revealed expectations for population to again return to approximately 1300 as hunting is reintroduced and wolf numbers increase.

 

Projections to year 2016 with 10 years of wolf control and black bear reduced by 30% by year 2010, with no change in human harvest of 90, shows moose population to reach 4250 by year 2016. No projections beyond that discussed.

 

Multiple projections to 2016 with 10 years of wolf control and black bears reduced to 30% and no change in human harvest, but allowing for weather influence show population ranges from 1900 to 5750, with mean about 3000 in year 2016 then generally declining.

 

 

Predation ratio estimation based on 1500 moose show 907 calves born

363 calves killed by black bear,

100 calves killed by wolf

36 calves killed by grizzly

45 calves killed by weather

85 adults killed by wolves

38 adults killed by bears.

667 mortality of moose population without weather or hunting allowances.

Human harvest of 90 allows only 150 for recruitment into population.

 

Discussion of overall impacts:

Heavy snows above critical amounts in late 80s mid 90s

Wolf numbers decline from 95-97 to amount supported by low moose numbers.

Late 90s high snow caused moose to concentrate on rivers, wolves followed and being near human travel corridors resulted in more observation of wolves preying on moose.

Latest estimates and counts from 99 show wolf ratio consistent with most studies of natural dynamics in North America.