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FWP begins study of declining moose populations

Published On: Apr 29 2013 01:12:10 PM MDT
HELENA, Mont. -

Montana wildlife officials have begun a 10-year study to find out why moose populations are declining in parts of Montana.
The Fish, Wildlife and Parks study will look at populations on the Big Hole, the Cabinet Mountains and the Rocky Mountain Front.
FWP research biologist Nick DeCesare says FWP mostly uses hunter harvest statistics to make management decisions and there isn't a lot of hard data available.
Agency officials said in a release Monday that 12 moose in each of the three areas have been fitted with radio collars for long-term monitoring of adult female survival, pregnancy and calf survival rates.
Wildlife officials also took blood, fecal, hair and teeth samples for analysis.
The agency says theories about the declining populations include more parasites, predators and changes in habitat.