The Intensive Management (IM) Program that ADF&G Division of Wildlife Conservation has initiated is showing positive results. Many areas have more moose to harvest in GMU 13 and 16 than prior to the IM program.
The Predator Control (PC) Program part of IM helped boost moose numbers back toward what the habitat sustained during the 1980's & 90s'. Moose are moving back to those areas decimated by wolves because the appropriate wolf control program was instituted. NOW lets work on some of the habitat...
Large areas of habitat in GMU 16B became under utilized when the wolf population was "allowed" to increase during the Gov. Tony Knowles (do nothing - hands off) administration. The area is only now creeping out of the costly predator pit that Knowles bought in to with his "naturalist" biologists. Many ADF&G biologists were in favor of active management in those days but were afraid for their jobs if they bucked the Knowles Administration. True story...
Now moose will return to their former ranges and in increased numbers for people, subsistence, family, sport hunting and wildlife watching - strictly predicated on PC. Next will be a call to improve wildlife habitats where allowed, to improve the carrying capacity of the habitat, within the land's ability, to provide a higher sustained yield of moose. It is not simple nor easy but it works. Don't fence with the nay sayers. Focus on what you know by doing your own research on the web. Start by reading the research ADF&G links provide. It is easy and often fashionable to be negative (them darn guys!). Think for yourself.
A good example of improved wildlife habitat that benefits people who want more moose (and game birds, and fur bearers, and a greater diversity of song birds) may be seen in the Fairbanks - Delta Areas of the Tanana State Forest and in those areas where Native Village & Corporate lands are becoming more proactively managed for wood and wildlife. (Yes! Some are on board, its happening). Do you know why many areas in GMU 20 have lots of moose? Because they have proactive, science based, cooperative management there on the Tanana State Forest.
I'm in favor of "Intensive Management" (IM) that also manages habitat for abundance. It works and I'd be happy to shoot cow moose as allowed. Habitat enhancement improves the land for all wildlife that rely on components provided by regenerating/new forests and it dosen't trash other important resource values. IM is mutually inclusive of all other resource values with the exception of probably wilderness or park designation. I think we have enough "parks & wilderness" thank you, IMHO.
I think the Alaska Department of Fish & Game, Division of Wildlife Conservation is doing an excellent job. Many thanks to ADF&G for their ability and leadership. In addition to the Intensive Management Program they created a new Game Management Region and the new Small Game Program which is a dream come true for many of us with high hopes for it's success.
I am hugely optimistic about the future and I can't wait to see what happens next!