The UP moose herd has taken a hit, down an estimated 128 animals since 2013. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has released its 2015 moose population survey which estimates the herd at 323 animals. In 2013, the herd was estimated at 451. Potential factors range from climate change to a possible increase in wolf predation. “We do a core range survey in the Western UP, in Iron, Baraga and Marquette counties where we did the reintroductions,” said Chad Stewart, deer, elk and moose management specialist for the DNR. “There’s a smaller population in the eastern UP as well.” The moose range in the Western UP covers roughly 1,400 square miles. Every other year DNR staff survey most of that area from above. In 2015 flights covered all survey plots within the core moose area, where 80-90 percent of the Western UP moose population is located.
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