By Justin Jones,Correspondent (Editor's Note: A big moose is a truly impressive trophy, and it's not surprising that the species is near the top of the "bucket list" for many subscribers. Last April, we ran a report by wildlife biologist Dr. Dale Toweill stressing that hunters wanting a true trophy Shiras moose should act fast (see Article 2831 in our database). While Toweill focused particularly on Idaho where wolf populations have exploded, there are other problems affecting moose populations in other parts of the country. New correspondent Justin Jones looked into the current state of moose in the Lower 48 for us. Here's his report.)
Moose populations are dwindling in many parts of the Lower 48. The big story is in Minnesota
where the DNR has suspended moose hunting indefinitely, after having cut down to fewer than 100 bull-only moose permits in 2012. So far, no other state has been forced to suspend moose hunting entirely, but it looks like fewer moose permits may be part of a growing trend. In Idaho
state game authorities have cut permitting in response to declining moose herds. According to ongoing wildlife studies, those states had seen increasing moose populations from the 1950s until the early 2000s, with a corresponding increase in hunting opportunities, but since then the moose have been dying off in many districts.
While states in the Midwest haven't allowed any nonresident hunting, meaning the moose decline there may not matter so much to traveling hunters, Minnesota provides a good example of how quickly hunting opportunities for these animals can disappear......