Moose Project Chronology

1983

  • Ontario offered opportunity to translocate moose
  • Director and Wildlife Division Chief authorized technical preparations

1984

  • Wildlife Division advance team traveled to Ontario to select capture site
  • Schmitt and Aho wrote Michigan Natural Resources magazine article on expected translocation

1985

  • 19 cows and 10 bulls translocated from Ontario to Michigan
  • Burgoyne wrote Michigan Natural Resources magazine article on translocation
  • 21 calves observed with 17 radio-collared cows during May-July calf checks (2 cows not pregnant)
  • 3 translocated bulls died in August
  • surveillance flights conducted on a variable schedule, up to 3 per week
  • bulls checked during fall rut for tightness of radio-collars (OK)
  • necropsy performed on a translocated cow that died in December
  • Bull 20 (a.k.a. "Gulliver") roamed from Marquette to Chippewa Co.
  • "Caution - Moose Area" signs posted along forest roads
Moose translocation Moose translocation Moose translocation
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1986

  • 16 of 21 calves from summer 1985 observed from air or ground in April 1986
  • 10 calves observed with 14 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • no pregnancies were noted in 4 cows that died during winter 1985-86
  • lower calving success suggested that more bulls needed
  • necropsies were performed on 1 bull and 4 cows
  • surveillance flights conducted weekly
  • Acker wrote Michigan Natural Resources magazine article
  • "Caution - Moose Area" signs posted along forest roads
  • MDOT installed "moose crossing" signs at ends of 18-mile portion of M-28, Baraga Co.

1987

  • 9 of 10 calves from summer 1986 spotted from the air or ground in April 1987
  • 15 bulls and 15 cows translocated from Ontario to Marquette Co.
  • 30 calves observed with 27 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • gunshot uncollared bull found dead during November
  • conservation officers ascertained identity of shooter, but insufficient physical evidence and out-of-state residence precluded prosecution
  • Hendrickson and Aho attended North American Moose Conference and Workshop in Duluth
  • Aho participated in development of 2 moose habitat suitability index models (published in 1988)
  • Schmitt and Dalton published a paper on drugs used to immobilize moose and "reverse" them
  • surveillance flights conducted weekly
  • necropsies performed on 1 bull and 4 cows
  • "Caution - Moose Area" signs posted along forest roads

1988

  • 24 of 30 calves from summer 1987 spotted from air in January 1988
  • 27 calves observed with 23 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • necropsies performed on 2 bulls, 4 cows, and 3 calves
  • surveillance flights conducted weekly
  • Michigan Outdoor Writers Association donated commemorative plaque and moose information kiosk constructed at Van Riper State Park
  • Schmitt and Aho wrote chapter for a book on translocation of wild animals
  • Wildlife Division provided technical and logistical support for a Northern Michigan University graduate student's research on vegetative and physical characteristics of winter bedding sites

1989

  • 22 of 27 calves from summer 1988 spotted from air in January 1989
  • 17 calves observed with 16 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • necropsies performed on 2 bulls and 7 cows
  • surveillance flights conducted weekly; flights contracted to NMU for a portion of the year
  • biologists on snowshoes darted and radio-collared 4 calves and 1 yearling and replaced radio-collar on 1 translocated cow
  • Hendrickson et al. presented paper at North American Moose Conference and Workshop, Newfoundland
  • Aho presented paper on movements, reproduction, and survival of translocated moose to Wisconsin Chapter of The Wildlife Society

1990

  • 12 of 17 calves from summer 1989 seen from air during January-March 1990
  • 12 calves observed with 16 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • biologists on snowshoes dart and radio-collar a female calf and an adult bull and replace a radio-collar on a translocated cow
  • trial runs with a piston-powered helicopter to dart moose proved unfeasible
  • gunshot uncollared bull found dead in Ontonagon Co.
  • necropsies performed on 6 bulls, 3 cows, and 1 calf
  • surveillance flights conducted weekly
  • 2-year-old cow moose struck and killed by minivan on M-28, Baraga Co.; hide tanned for educational demonstration; meat salvaged and donated to charity
  • Moose Locator Guide brochure produced collaboratively with Marquette Co. tourism organization
  • Aho and Hendrickson published a paper on reproduction and survival of translocated moose in ALCES journal
  • Quinn and Aho published a paper on whole weights of moose in ALCES journal
  • Aho presented a paper, "Impact of Moose on Landscape Ecology and Biodiversity", at Hiawatha N.F.

1991

  • suspect in 1990 bull shooting sentenced to 6-month jail term
  • Lt. Ekdahl wrote article on 1990 Ontonagon Co. bull shooting for Michigan Natural Resources
  • calf checks suspended
  • surveillance flights conducted biweekly
  • 1st attempt made to conduct aerial census, following Ontario's protocol
  • Moose Locator Guide revised
  • unsuccessful effort to remove a nuisance bull from a farm results in death of moose
  • necropsies performed on 3 bulls and 3 cows
  • Minzey and Robinson published a paper on characteristics of winter bed sites of moose in ALCES journal

1992

  • calf checks suspended
  • surveillance flights conducted biweekly
  • biologists on snowshoes darted and radio-collared 2 female calves and 1 male calf and replaced a radio-collar on a translocated cow
  • Moose Locator Guide revised
  • MDOT abandoned "moose crossing" signs on M-28 because of repeated thefts since 1986
  • necropsies performed on 3 cows

1993

  • calf checks re-instituted late in summer
  • biologists on snowshoes darted and radio-collared a male calf
  • bull moose struck and killed by semi, M-28, Baraga Co.; meat salvaged and donated to county food pantry
  • biologist dispatched bull hopelessly mired in mine tailings basin
  • Moose Locator Guide revised
  • Michigan Tech professor contracted to develop aerial census technique
  • technical and logistical advice provided to a University of Michigan exploratory study of moose habitat use
  • necropsies performed on 2 bulls

1994

  • aerial census sightability trials conducted
  • 6 calves observed with 6 radio-collared cows during calf checks
  • surveillance flights conducted biweekly
  • biologists on snowshoes darted and radio-collared a male calf, a female calf, and a translocated bull that had slipped its original collar in February 1986
  • MTU statistician attended North American Moose Conference and Workshop in Idaho and heard about Helicopter Wildlife Management, Inc., which specializes in the net-gun capture of wild animals
  • cow struck and killed by pickup truck, M-28, Baraga Co.; meat donated to charity
  • trial attempt to dart moose calves in October proved unworkable because of lack of tracking snow
  • Moose Locator Guide revised
  • necropsies performed on 1 bull and 3 cows

1995

  • Helicopter Wildlife Management Co., Inc. captured (net-gunning) and radio-collared 26 moose in 5 days
  • biologists on snowshoes darted and radio-collared 2 female calves in 2 days
  • aerial census sightability trials conducted
  • surveillance flights conducted biweekly
  • Aho presented a 10-year retrospective paper at the North American Moose Conference and Workshop
  • 7 calves observed with 10 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • Moose Locator Guide revised
  • Wildlife Division provided partial financial, technical, and logistical support to University of Alberta (Canada) study of gastropod intermediate hosts of brainworm
  • necropsies performed on 2 bulls and 2 cows

1996

  • 6 of 7 calves from summer 1995 spotted from the air in March 1996
  • 5 calves observed with 10 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • surveillance flights conducted biweekly
  • technical bulletin written and distributed (Aho et al.)
  • aerial census sightability trials conducted
  • financial, technical, and logistical support provided to University of Alberta study
  • Bull 29's carcass recovered in Chippewa Co.
  • nuisance bull unsuccessfully hazed with crackershells and truck horn from farm in northwestern Baraga Co., then darted, radio-collared, and translocated 40 miles away in October
  • necropsies performed on 1 bull and 2 cows

1997

  • 5 of 5 calves from summer 1996 spotted from the air in March 1997
  • aerial census plots flown during February 3-March 12, during record snowfall
  • 1 DNR airplane and 1 observer crew used
  • observers in State Police helicopter on April 21-22 spotted 6 moose
  • 3 calves observed with 8 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • 10 radio-collars refurbished and 7 new collars purchased in anticipation of another helicopter capture of moose; capture deferred until 1999
  • Moose Locator Guide revised
  • financial and technical support provided to University of Alberta study
  • display about Bull 29 constructed at River Mouth Campground, Tahquamenon Falls State Park
  • necropsies performed on 2 bulls and 1 calf
  • cow moose in Baraga Co. killed by gunshot in firearm deer season
  • mount of bull moose with antlers in velvet installed in lobby of Baraga District Office

1998

  • aerial census plots flown during December 1, 1997-February 4, 1998
  • aerial census logistics improved by use of 3 DNR aircraft and 3 observer crews
  • precision of estimate improved by increasing number of plots examined
  • technical support provided to University of Alberta study; Boppel completed thesis on gastropods
  • necropsies performed on 1 cow, 3 bulls, and 1 calf
  • proposal to study the dynamics of the moose population and to evaluate alternative population estimation techniques is developed
  • 7 calves seen with 7 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • moose research proposal is approved; project to be done cooperatively with Michigan State University
  • bull struck by semi on US-41 west of Ishpeming on Oct. 1; meat donated to charity
  • grouse hunter found a bull moose trapped in tangled, old telephone wire on October 1; Wildlife and Law Enforcement personnel darted moose, cut away wire, fitted a radio-collar and eartags, and released it
  • Drummer and Aho published a paper on a moose sightability model in ALCES journal

1999

  • Hawkins and Powers Aviation helicopter and DNR personnel captured (net-gunning) and radio-collared 26 moose in 7 days
  • movements and survival of radio-collared moose monitored with weekly flights.
  • necropsies performed on 1 bull and 3 cows
  • radio-collar slipped off 1calf
  • 21 calves seen with 19 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • Dodge et al. presented a paper on current research at Midwest Fish and Wildlife Conference
  • Beyer et al. presented a paper on the status of the translocated moose population at North American Moose Conference and Workshop
  • Aho presented paper on his study of aquatic plant resources on Isle Royale National Park at the North American Moose Conference and Workshop
  • Nankervis et al. presented a paper on the potential exposure of moose in the Upper Peninsula to brainworm at the North American Moose Conference and Workshop
  • Skeletal remains of nuisance moose translocated from a Baraga County farm in 1996 found by deer hunters in Ontonagon County

2000

  • Hawkins and Powers Aviation helicopter and DNR personnel captured (net-gunning) and radio-collared 29 moose in 8 days; 4 GPS radio-collars are fitted on moose and later recovered
  • DNR donated hide and antlers from a 1998 road-killed yearling moose for mounting and display at the Superior Dome at Northern Michigan University, Marquette; DNR also donated a large set of antlers from a bull translocated to Michigan in 1987 for the display
  • 19 calves seen with 27 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • necropsies performed on 3 cows, 3 bulls and 1 calf moose
  • radio-collar slipped off a yearling cow
  • Dodge et al. presented paper on Upper Peninsula moose reproduction at the Midwest Fish and Wildlife Conference
  • Aerial census work begins in December and seeks to compare alternative population estimation techniques

2001

  • aerial census work continues through January
  • Hawkins and Powers Aviation helicopter and DNR personnel captured (net-gunning) and radio-collared 28 moose in 5 days; 6 GPS radio-collars are fitted on moose
  • 27 calves seen with 39 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • necropsies performed on 3 cows and 3 bulls
  • radio-collar slipped off a young bull
  • two radio-collared moose disperse to northern Wisconsin
  • Dodge et al. presented paper on moose population dynamics at the TheWildlife Society 2001 Annual Conference
  • Michigan Moose brochure published and distributed

2002

  • 22 calves seen with 33 radio-collared cows during summer calf checks
  • Aerial census work continues
  • One bull broke his collar and 3 other young bulls slipped off their collars
  • necropsies performed on 3 bulls and 10 cows
  • radio-collared bull that dispersed to Wisconsin dies
  • Dodge et al. presented paper on moose reproduction, survival and movements at the Michigan Chapter of The Wildlife Society 2002 meeting