Moose Calves in DNR Study Die Quickly

By KBJR News 1

Credit: Ron Moen, NRRI

Moose Calves in DNR Study Die Quickly

June 5, 2013 Updated Dec 5, 2013 at 7:04 PM CDT

(NNCNOW.com) --- Moose experts believe about half the Moose calves that died during a recent study, may have died from the trauma of being captured and collared for the research.

Of the 49 moose calves, collared by scientists with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources last winter, 22 have died.

The moose mortality study used collars to track the animals' movement and to find them quickly if they died.

Glenn DelGiudice, the DNR's lead researcher tells the Duluth News Tribune, the study showed nine moose were eaten by predators, most likely wolves and black bears.

Another eight died from the trauma of being captured.

Moose expert, Ron Moen justifies the study saying it's impossible to determine the cause of death without collaring a moose.

"There are going to be some capture mortalities,” he said. “You need to accept that in order to learn what you want to know."

The study is being done to try to understand why the Minnesota moose population has seen such dramatic declines.

Calf collaring protocols have been changed to minimize contact and stress on the young moose.

This calf study is part of a larger research project in which more than 100 adult moose have been collared.