View Poll Results: Greatest threat to ungulate populations?

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  • Hunting

    9 15.79%
  • Disease

    4 7.02%
  • Predation

    19 33.33%
  • Environmental Change

    8 14.04%
  • Loss of Habitat (human caused)

    29 50.88%
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Thread: Greatest Threat to Ungulate Populations

  1. #21
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Loss of Habitat (human caused)
    Of course if humans are changing the habitat they are also hunting and changing the enviorment and bringing desease.All of this brings wolves and bears to a smaller area to find their meal giving people something to blam for lack of ungulates
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

  2. #22
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    Loss of habitat ( human caused ) also the introduction of non-native species of plants, ( human caused ) of which some are toxic for moose.

  3. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian M View Post
    Habitat destruction and fragmentation, without a doubt. Worldwide the two greatest drivers of species extinction are habitat loss and invasive species. Everything else pales in comparison to these two threats.
    Quote Originally Posted by .338WM View Post
    That is the truth for most species of animals on the planet.
    Quote Originally Posted by AniWahaya View Post
    Well, after reading thousands of posts by most who replied to this poll, I'm going to make the assumption that they know what an ungulate is and that I was referring to Alaska. :-)
    After reading some of the posts on this thread specifically, I would assume some thought differently. But you know what they say about assuming...

  4. #24
    AniWahaya
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    Okay, I will try to satisfy your discontent. Brian and .338, did you understand the poll and it was in reference to animals with hooves and in reference to Alaska? I feel slightly stupid even asking..
    Quote Originally Posted by Bushwhack Jack View Post
    After reading some of the posts on this thread specifically, I would assume some thought differently. But you know what they say about assuming...

  5. #25
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Yep, I understood it to be specific to Alaska. I put the mention in there about the world as a whole to note that the same risks apply to Alaska's ungulates as to those elsewhere. Regardless of the area or the species, habitat loss and invasive species are the biggest threats to a species' survival.

  6. #26
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    But take note that the poll asked about ungulate POPULATIONS, presumably in Alaska. Predation (including hunting) will clearly have an effect on these populatons, but as the populations decrease, the predators go elsewhere (including hunters). The populations then bounce back, although never as fast as the hunters would like. If the habitat stays intact, these populations can withstand the ups and downs of predation. Ditto for many other sources of mortality (disease, etc). However, if these populations are unable to survive and reproduce due to poor habitat conditions, they have no chance.

  7. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by AniWahaya View Post
    Okay, I will try to satisfy your discontent. Brian and .338, did you understand the poll and it was in reference to animals with hooves and in reference to Alaska? I feel slightly stupid even asking..
    Quote Originally Posted by Brian M View Post
    Yep, I understood it to be specific to Alaska. I put the mention in there about the world as a whole to note that the same risks apply to Alaska's ungulates as to those elsewhere. Regardless of the area or the species, habitat loss and invasive species are the biggest threats to a species' survival.
    Okay thanks for the clarification guys. AniWahay, sorry if my posts seem to be trivial and defensive in nature. That was not my intention. I am actually genuinely interested in this thread you have created. Brian, since you have clarified your belief that loss of habitat and invasive species are the biggest threat to ungulate species in Alaska, would you mind clarifying for me exactly where this loss of habitat threat to ungulate species is occuring right now in Alaska? And please be specific as to the location and the habitat loss and the species of ungulate. Also, which invasive species are threatening ungulates in Alaska. Please don't say pike. We are talking about ungulates. Are you referring to Sitka Blacktail deer in the PWS since they could be considered invasive and perhaps they are taking over moose habitat? Just wondering, again, not trying to be trivial and defensive. Genuinely curious. Thanks.

  8. #28
    Member bushrat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alexander
    Where I live in 16b it would have been predation.

    Not necessarily. There has been quite a bit of research done there and across the lower susitna that pinpoints continued deep-snow winters as thee major cause of (additive) moose mortality and population declines.

    Quote Originally Posted by alexander
    Since the bear eradication program, Moose have made a dramatic comeback.


    That isn't what your local area bios said last spring when they were asked by the Board of Game about the efficacy of the bear control efforts. They did say, however, that their report was preliminary to the final report that should be presented at the next Region IV meeting. Your moose population there is always going to be severely impacted by deep snow winters...it's one of those places where >50% of the time that happens. Fire suppression as well has had negative effects and it's getting harder and harder to do any controlled burns because of all the remote cabins and because smoke can influence air travel at Ted Stevens.

    Definitely habitat loss and fragmentation is thee major threat to ungulates. But keep in mind too that each place is unique in its own way and the "threats" can differ.



  9. #29
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Good questions, Jack. I was referring to unspecified future threats, not currently occurring threats. I suppose that is one place where I was unclear on the question - I answered taking threat to mean future harm, and I also was specifically thinking of serious harm or complete eradication of populations. I do not see that predation will at any point cause the complete eradication of any Alaskan ungulate populations - though perhaps I'm not thinking of a specific example...perhaps north slope musk ox would fit the bill due to the increased predation by grizzlies? Certainly predation can cause population drops, but that's not how I was reading the word "threat". If one was looking at current population declines, though, predation has to a part of that discussion.

    I hope that clarifies my answer.

  10. #30
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    Mayday trees are one of the invasive species that are toxic to moose, they are spreading quickly, seeds are eaten by birds and dispersed elsewhere.

    http://www.alaskadispatch.com/articl...rden?page=full

  11. #31
    AniWahaya
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    http://plants.alaska.gov/invasives.php
    I'd say invasive vegetation for sure and perhaps invasive insects that harm native vegetation and could potentially cause disease in ungulates. Regarding loss of habitat, shoot, anywhere a new road is built etc., could be considered loss of habitat.

  12. #32
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    Just ignore by earlier post, I was not fully awake, saw Brian's post and added to it as I saw fit without notice to "poll" or "Forum".Some took exception ( go figure).

    Tearbear
    Mayday trees are one of the invasive species that are toxic to moose, they are spreading quickly, seeds are eaten by birds and dispersed elsewhere.
    And on that note: the MOA and the State of Alaska continue to plant Mayday trees along the roadways.

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tearbear View Post
    Mayday trees are one of the invasive species that are toxic to moose, they are spreading quickly, seeds are eaten by birds and dispersed elsewhere.
    Quote Originally Posted by .338WM View Post
    And on that note: the MOA and the State of Alaska continue to plant Mayday trees along the roadways.
    That will keep those BLM guys busy! As they are trying to get rid of them...talk about job security.

    http://www.blm.gov/ak/st/en/info/new..._10182011.html

  14. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by bushrat View Post


    Fire suppression as well has had negative effects and it's getting harder and harder to do any controlled burns because of all the remote cabins and because smoke can influence air travel at Ted Stevens.

    Definitely habitat loss and fragmentation is thee major threat to ungulates. But keep in mind too that each place is unique in its own way and the "threats" can differ.


    Good points Bushrat.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian M View Post
    Good questions, Jack. I was referring to unspecified future threats, not currently occurring threats. I suppose that is one place where I was unclear on the question - I answered taking threat to mean future harm, and I also was specifically thinking of serious harm or complete eradication of populations. I do not see that predation will at any point cause the complete eradication of any Alaskan ungulate populations - though perhaps I'm not thinking of a specific example...perhaps north slope musk ox would fit the bill due to the increased predation by grizzlies? Certainly predation can cause population drops, but that's not how I was reading the word "threat". If one was looking at current population declines, though, predation has to a part of that discussion.

    I hope that clarifies my answer.
    Yes it does. Thanks for the clarification.

  15. #35
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    For sure it was not bears and wolves that put a end to Caribou passing through Anchorage twice a year.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

  16. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    For sure it was not bears and wolves that put a end to Caribou passing through Anchorage twice a year.
    What do you mean, end? Caribou pass into and through Anchorage hundreds, or even thousands of times a year. Their usual mode of transportation would be in the back of a pickup or the hood of a Ford Taurus, but.....

  17. #37
    Member 0321Tony's Avatar
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    Default Re: Greatest Threat to Ungulate Populations

    I think anti hunters are a huge threat. They would rather see animals either eat them selves out of food or allow predators over eat them. Rather than let hunters regulate and keep a maximum sustainable yield of all animals in areas around the state... Perfect point is the KP moose being over eaten by brown bears. There are areas on the pen that have good habitat but no moose to live there they have all been eaten

    Sent from my GT-I9100 using Tapatalk 2

  18. #38

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    Okay here are some numbers.

    In McGrath in 2001 newborn calves were radiocollared and monitored to determine mortality rates. It was determined that 45% of the calves died due to predation by bears. 20% of the calves died due to predation by wolves. 5% died of unknown causes.

    On the southern end of the Alaskan peninsula caribou numbered around 10,000 in the 1980's. Then they declined to around 600 by 2006. When biologists conducted a survey to look at the mortality of calves, it was determined that 400 calves were born in the spring of 07, and only 2 survived by the fall. Wolf predation was found to be the cause of the mortality. Wolf removal was conducted and by the following year the ratio of calves to cows went from 1 calf: 100 cows to 39 calves: 100 cows.

    In unit 20A in 1975 the fish and game conducted a population survey of moose. It was determined that there were approximately 2,800 moose in that area. For the next 30 years, predator control successfully reduced predation and increased the moose population to 18,000 moose by 2005.

    Certainly habitat loss is a factor, but it is hard to ignore the impacts that a predator can have. Sure hunting is a form of predation. But we as humans can control and curtail the amount of game we harvest. Take for example moose or sheep hunting. By only harvesting full curl 8 year old rams or 50 3/4 brow tine bulls, the population can still be sustained as long as sublegal rams and bulls are protected so that they can breed the ewes and cows. I don't see humans killing off all the calves and lambs like predators indiscriminately do. Don't get me wrong, predators can play an important role in an ecosystem, like removing the sick and weak individuals, but I don't think conservative hunting comes close to impacting ungulate populations like predation does. If you are wondering my sources watch this video produced by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

    http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm....main_wildlife

  19. #39
    AniWahaya
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    I can almost hear the sound of a can of worms being opened..
    Thanks BJ, very insightful..

  20. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bushwhack Jack View Post
    I apologize. I noticed that when you go to my link you have to first preselect the video in order to see it. The video I referenced is titled Managing Predators and Prey: Chapter 4

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