CHARACTERISTICS OF WINTER BED SITES OF MOOSE IN MICHIGAN
Eighty-three bed sites of 4 adult male moose (Alces alces) and 3 adult females with calves were analyzed in winter 1987-88 to define vegetational and physical features chosen by members of a newly established population in Michigan. During early winter, moose bedded primarily in areas dominated by sugar maple (Acer saccharum). In late winter, sites containing eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) were selected over other habitat types. Eighty-three percent of late winter cow beds were associated with conifer trees, where young hemlocks and balsam firs occurred in the shrub layer. All late winter calf beds (N = 18) examined were associated with hemlock and balsam fir. Shrubs at calf beds in late winter were dominated by sugar maple and red maple (Acer rubrum). Beds of bulls in late winter were primarily associated with an overstory of balsam fir and hemlock, where sugar maple, balsam fir, and red maple dominated the shrub layer. Canopy closure appeared unimportant in early winter, but in late winter bulls, cows, and calves chose denser canopy than could be attributed to chance, particularly in hemlock-dominated stands. In early winter, snow depths (<50 cm) did not influence bed site selection whereas in late winter, moose significantly chose areas with shallow snow for bed sites. Management recommendations to maintain late winter moose habitat include maintenance and creation of small stands of hemlock and balsam fir.
How to Cite
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.