Home > Mass Animal Deaths > Mass Die Offs Of Moose In Minnesota Alarms Scientists

Mass Die Offs Of Moose In Minnesota Alarms Scientists


By Brent McDonald, The New York Times – “For moose, this year’s winter-long deep freeze across the Upper Midwest is truly ideal weather. The large, gangly creatures are adapted to deep snow: Their hollow fur insulates them like fiberglass does in a house. And the prolonged cold helps eradicate pests that prey on moose, like ticks and meningeal worm, or brain worm. Yet moose in Minnesota are dying at an alarming rate, and biologists are perplexed as to why.

Mark Keech, right, a research biologist, and Tiffany Wolf, a veterinarian, fitted a moose with a radio collar and took samples as part of a Minnesota study of why the animals die.

In the 1980s, moose numbered about 4,000 in the northwest part of the state; today, there are about 100. In Northeast Minnesota, the population has dropped by half since 2006, to 4,300 from more than 8,800. In 2012, the decline was steep enough — 35 percent — that the state and local Chippewa tribes, which rely on moose meat for subsistence, called off the moose hunt. The mortality rate rebounded slightly this year, but moose continue to die at twice the normal rate to sustain a population. Researchers elsewhere, along the southern edge of moose territory in New Hampshire and Montana, are also beginning to notice declines in the animals’ numbers.

Seth Moore, a wildlife biologist in Grand Portage, theorizes that recent years of warmer, shorter winters and hotter, longer summers have resulted in a twofold problem. The changing climate has stressed out the moose, compromising their immune systems. And warmer temperatures have allowed populations of white-tailed deer, carriers of brain worm — which is fatal to moose — to thrive.

Still, ‘I’m not necessarily convinced that brain worm is the silver bullet that’s killing all of the moose,’ Dr. Moore said.” Read more.

Categories: Mass Animal Deaths
  1. cg
    03/06/2014 at 12:48 PM

    Reblogged this on Catholic Glasses and commented:
    Lord help those moose’s population to rise. Help those scientists to help them.

    Like

  2. 03/06/2014 at 3:20 PM

    weird, I live in Minnesota and this is the first I have heard of this story

    Like

  1. No trackbacks yet.

The opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of MidnightWatcher's Blogspot. Although differences of opinion are welcomed, please refrain from personal attacks and inappropriate language. This blog reserves the right to edit or delete any comments that fail to do so.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: