MANAGEMENT ALTERNATIVES FOR UTAH MOOSE
Since the mid-1960’s moose (Alces alces) numbers have increased significantly in northern Utah. Previous studies of the principal population, located on the north slope of the Uinta Mountains, estimated winter range carrying capacity. This report examines 2 proposed management alternatives, maximum-yield and trophy management. Manipulation of the adult sex ratio by sex-discriminate harvests produced changes in herd productivity. During the period 1964-1971 the mean bull:cow ratio observed in winter counts was 1:2.2 and the mean productivity was estimated at 74 calves/100 cows. Following an artificial adjustment in the bull:cow ratio to approximately 1:3.6, the mean productivity was estimated at 46 calves/100 cows. Returning the bull:cow ratio to pretreatment levels appears to have increased productivity. A parallel study of antler charactristics in relation to age, indicated that moose attained 80-85% of observed maximum growth at 4-5 years of age. The proposed management alternatives are evaluated considering these results.
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