Does Predator Reduction Have an Impact on Moose Harvest?

Larry Bartlett

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 19, 2010
Messages
1,014
Reaction score
173
I guess my point is simply even when there are more moose that doesn't equate to more moose harvests. I can't connect the dots regardless of why or when more moose are present and the harvest stats don't budge one way or the other with or without predator management? Is there another level of scientific drama I'm missing on this topic? Should we all stop worrying about shooting wolves and bears?
 

Patsfan54

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 21, 2016
Messages
1,600
Reaction score
245
Location
Alaska
I've not seen any peer community scientists finding flaws with their means/methods or conclusions. (?)
As noted on the first post of this thread and directly from the article:

Current state biologist Tom Paragi said “The fact is the moose harvest did increase substantially, almost doubling from about 2003 to 2015, coincident with the implementation of wolf control and simultaneously brown bears had been reduced because of liberalized harvest regulations”
 

Patsfan54

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 21, 2016
Messages
1,600
Reaction score
245
Location
Alaska
It's worth noting that the title of the study itself is "Efficacy of Killing Large Carnivores to Enhance Moose Harvests". This isn't a thorough analysis of all game in predator reduction areas, it's limited to moose harvest. It doesn't say if there are more or less moose in the area studied, it doesn't say what the predator numbers in the studied areas were before or after predator reduction, it doesn't even mention caribou in the area studied. While this study briefly touches upon game management regulations impact on harvest, this study does not take it into account in it's conclusion.

What was the caribou harvest in the area studied during this same time, how did the previous winter impact harvest levels for both moose and caribou, how has the availability of browse impacted overall game numbers, and ultimately what was game management decisions impact upon harvest levels?
 

bushrat

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 15, 2005
Messages
5,706
Reaction score
718
Location
Now residing in Fairbanks from the bush
Wolf control programs to boost moose numbers work over the short term. They only work long term for most areas if we do them indefinitely. In areas like the Tanana Flats across the river from Fairbanks, wolf control worked long term because there is a large urban population of trappers that consistently have taken 40% of the wolf population every year after wolf control ceased. In areas without a large trapping effort to take that much of the wolf population, we quickly get back to the low-density-dynamic-equilibrium common for moose across the state.

Many studies have shown that the efficacy of control programs is short lived, unless we continue to do them every five years or so. That's why the Yukon suspended their wolf control efforts. The costs (both financially and socially) were too high for the end results.

Also, some control programs have unintended consequences. Look at the wolf control we did for so long to boost the Fortymile caribou herd. Some of us said the habitat couldn't support that many more caribou, but the Department and BOG went ahead with it anyway. Suddenly there are too many caribou for the habitat, so the state increases bag limit substantially to reduce the size of the herd that is now too large for the habitat to sustain. So we spent all that money, had tons of controversy, to find out we went too far.

Effective wildlife management -- in terms of providing animals for hunters -- should smooth out the natural highs and lows we see in wildlife populations so there is a sustainable harvestable surplus of prey. It shouldn't end up creating its own highs and lows.
 

mark knapp

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 26, 2018
Messages
863
Reaction score
264
Location
Fairbanks
I guess my point is simply even when there are more moose that doesn't equate to more moose harvests. I can't connect the dots regardless of why or when more moose are present and the harvest stats don't budge one way or the other with or without predator management? Is there another level of scientific drama I'm missing on this topic? Should we all stop worrying about shooting wolves and bears?
We have a Department of Game to worry about those things, I do what they say to do. We pay them for that and they have professionals to think about those things.
 

mark knapp

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 26, 2018
Messages
863
Reaction score
264
Location
Fairbanks
We have a Department of Game to worry about those things, I do what they say to do. We pay them for that and they have professionals to think about those things.
I should have added, that way, I don't need to worry. If I want one, and if BOG makes it attractive enough, I take one.

If they want us to shoot more predators, they make it more attractive for us to shoot them. (IE, bigger bag limits, longer seasons, no tag, one every year, over bate, etc.)
 

mark knapp

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 26, 2018
Messages
863
Reaction score
264
Location
Fairbanks
According to ADFG population abundance estimates, there were 275 wolves and about 18,000 moose present in Unit 13 last year...
I'm not sure where you are coming from. If it's true, it takes 13 moose to feed a wolf for a year, it takes 3,575 moose to feed 275 wolves in one year. If nothing else happens, there would soon be no moose.
 

4merguide

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 18, 2012
Messages
12,881
Reaction score
673
Location
Kenai Peninsula, Alaska
That's a suburban coyote attacking a kid. Not good, but not sure what that has to do with killing wolfs in remote Alaska to boost moose populations.
Yeah, it's not like posts ever get off track around here. Sure, it doesn't have anything to do with moose, but the point is, when predators are left unchecked all kinds of crazy things can, and do, happen all over this country. Not too many years ago in Anchorage it was determined that a bear snatched up a little boy out of his backyard and they never saw the little guy again. Predators have to be kept in check for many reasons.
 

The German

Active member
Joined
Feb 26, 2012
Messages
673
Reaction score
116
Location
Palmer, AK.
Yea,,,,, and this why I like to Leave a little "BLOOD" on the Mountain sometimes......
TG :cool:
 

Attachments

  • LJ's Montana_Elk_Hunter_Was-being_Hunted.jpg
    LJ's Montana_Elk_Hunter_Was-being_Hunted.jpg
    58.6 KB · Views: 9

Latest posts

Top