Dec 28-10

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2010: December: Dec 28-10
Moose on the loose    ...scroll down to share comments
Photo by E. Neil Harri

Mary Drew at Pasty Central (Mdrew) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 09:09 am:

The moose herd in the U.P. is closely watched and counts are done to keep tabs on how many and where the moose are populating the lands here UP North. When E. Neil Harri jumps in his plane and gets to making his rounds of the UP, he is treated to scenes like this trio of moose that he spotted. They seem to be having some type of conference, maybe wondering whether that guy in the red and white plane above, is going to make a landing nearby and join them. Talk about 'up close and personal'... almost looks like Neil could hop right down there without much of a drop!

By eugenia r. thompson (Ert) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 09:19 am:

Oh, my gosh, THREE bulls! Awesome shot! Thanks for sharing.

By Hollidays (Hollybranches) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 09:20 am:

How sad that our governor has approved moose hunting in Michigan. There are only 500, won't be for long.

By E. Neil Harri (Ilmayksi) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 09:27 am:

The smaller bulls hang around in bachelor packs. I see them sparring and browsing all day long. We are getting ready for the moose survey in January so this was taken on a presurvey flight.
We also need info on any wolf sightings north of the Portage bridge. We need to collar a wolf for research. The contact person is Brad Johnson of the Baraga DNRE. His number is 906-353-6651 ext 127. We appreciate the help.Neil

By E. Neil Harri (Ilmayksi) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 09:37 am:

A word of the moose hunt. It was a bill written by a downstate legislator that made a moose hunt law.They still need to research how many can be hunted and still maintain a sustainable herd. I am sure the number of permits will be small.
I know it will cause a lot of debate on both sides of the issue.

By Helen Marie Chamberlain (Helen) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 09:41 am:

What a NEAT photo, Neil! Wow. They are awesome characters for sure. Thanks so much for sharing!
Happy New Year to you and Yours!

By Eric Stewart (Estew) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 09:50 am:

So we're looking at a bunch of teenage boys who don't know what to do with themselves? I'll bet if they had opposable thumbs they'd be playing video games. Nice shot, Neil!

By Robert Goniea (Rjgoniea) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 09:52 am:

What, no squirrels hanging around them?:)

By Capt. Paul (Eclogite) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 09:53 am:

While we were up in Newfoundland over the summer, everyone kept telling us "watch out for the moose, they are all over the place!" Indeed, there are over 120,000 moose on The Rock, but we spent 9 days there and only saw 7 moose on the last day we were there. They are very secretive creatures. I have seen moose in the UP, including a bull, along M28 near the Champion area over the years. Until you see one up close in a car, you really can't imagine how large (and gangly) an animal they are.

And as far as moose hunting goes, everyone is jumping to conclusions without actually reading into it further. I believe the quote was "could allow" hunting if the DNRE deems it necessary, and then it would only be 5 animals per year. If they are managed properly, I see no reason why 5 per year couldn't be harvested; wasn't that the long-term goal of the project originally?? Also remember that it had to pass the Legislature before it reached the Governor's desk and if I read things correctly, it was a Traverse City Senator that proposed it in the first place.

Oh, and before anyone else jumps to another conclusion, I could never hunt a moose; they are just too dopey looking!! J

By Alex "UP-Goldwinger" (Alex) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 10:02 am:

Nice photo...I'll bet they are wondering if Sarah Palin is in the plane.

By Donna (Donna) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 10:03 am:

They ARE massive creatures, like the Cap't said! You just don't realize it till you see one. I've seen one up near LacLaBelle, running across the road. Lots of reports througout the Keweenaw too.

I have a friend that lives in Alaska, and she said "You know how you hit deer down there? We hit moose like that up here"...imagine. UGH...that's a traffic jam each time, and a guarantee to total your car!

By Gary Hookway (Ghookway) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 10:18 am:

Personally I don't believe a count of 500 represents a genetically stable herd, much less a huntable one !

By Cindy, New Baltimore, MI (Cindy) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 10:22 am:

Wow! I love moose pics. This one with three bulls is spectacular!

By David Soumis (Davesou) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 10:25 am:

why does everything that isn't human need to be hunted and killed?
They want to kill off the wolves in most states, Wisconsin wanted a mourning dove hunt takes about 50 of them to make a pot of they want to start a sandhill crane hunt. You didn't even see any 20 years ago.

now moose in Michigan. Something wrong with that, in my opinion.

By Shirley Waggoner (Shirlohio) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 10:36 am:

Awesome picture, Neil, thanks! I love those big, ol' gangly creatures!:)

By James Alain (Charlevoix) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 10:52 am:

You certainly were in the right place at the right time, Neil....gorgeous pix! Would you tell us just where you were when you spotted the trio? Most of my moose sightings have been within 5 or 6 miles of Nestoria.

By Nate (Nalwine) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 10:56 am:

I remember camping on the Moose River (about 30 miles from James Bay) one year. It was right around 4th of July and I remember dealing with snow and a stiff north wind all day. We reached our campsite late in the day and found the clearest spot we could pitch our tent. There were lots of small weed like trees everywhere making it hard to find clear ground. Turns out the spot we picked was clear because of the Moose. That night as we lay in our tent a Moose came down to the river in what must have been her spot. We were in the tent watching her sillouette against the moon light as she snorted and just stared at our tent for what seemed to be an eternity. We just laid there as still as we could hoping she'd go away. Eventually she did and we fell asleep. That was an eerie night.

By Tom (Tom) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 11:09 am:

Talk about a huge animal----------some years ago
my wife and I and our grandson were in Algonquin National Park sitting on the beach of a small lake when a huge male moose came out of the brush and waded into the lake until it had to swim. Our grandson was out in the lake swimming and the moose
got about 20 feet from him. The boy came to shore and we sat and watched the animal. It came to shore within 50 feet of us and began nibbling at the brushes along the lake. It was quite calm and it seemed as if it didn't even know we were there.
Later it roamed through the campground quite
I am 6 feet tall and I think if I stood next to that animal my head would have come up to it's shoulder and neck area. Surely it must have
weighed over 1000 pounds. A majestic animal.

By Daveofmohawk (Daveofmohawk) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 11:44 am:

Beautiful animals: last week Rolf Peterson was interviewed on TV6 news. For those of you who don't know him, he is considered one of the top wolf/moose experts in the world. Rolf was against a moose hunt and said that there is no way of verifying the 500 moose count, it is a poorly supported guess at best.

By E. Neil Harri (Ilmayksi) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 12:40 pm:

The moose pic was taken South of US-41 in Baraga county.
The count is a lot better than a guess. We fly the survey every other year now. We used to do it annualy.
I saw 38 moose in my presurvey flight across the general survey area. We fly grids and use a statistical model that took a couple of years to build.
We have several different densities for the grids so it is a pretty accurate count in my opinion.
Like I said before, There probably will not be many permits available.

By mickill mouse (Ram4) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 01:00 pm:

Moose on the loose and so is Neil. LOL

By mickill mouse (Ram4) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 01:02 pm:

You do great work, Neil

By Marianne Y (Marianne) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 01:45 pm:

That is an awesome photo, Neil! Thank you for sharing it with your Pasty friends. I would be happy to see just one bull moose in a photo, but three in one is a real treasure!

By Pat & Glenda (Gormfrog) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 01:49 pm:

Rare indeed is the person who looks for trouble and fails to find it. Moose hunting idea will bring it on..

By Capt. Paul (Eclogite) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 02:25 pm:

I failed to mention earlier...... great photo, Neil!!! My only question is do you find it common for 3 bull moose to be together like that this time of year??

By E. Neil Harri (Ilmayksi) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 03:58 pm:

Cap't, It is common to see bulls together except in the rut. They do a lot of sparring.The largest ones seem to be alone or with a favorite female. The cows with calves hang together.

By David Soumis (Davesou) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 04:12 pm:

3 meese or is it mooses?

By Cheryl Rozman (Cotton) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 06:01 pm:

We've lived in Gwinn for over 20 years, traveled back & forth to the CC many many times & only seen one moose near Champion one time. Wrong place at the wrong time I guess. Have to rely on Neil for seeing the moose & showing us. They're all nice pictures that you take too Neil.
Hubby says that the DNR only wants to make more money by having the hunt. Now that's only one opinion. LOL

By Wes Scott (Travelnorth) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 07:20 pm:

Fantastic shot! I've seen only two moose in my entire life one in the U.P and one in Minnesota.
I was on the Pictured Rocks tour last summer
and a tourist asked where were the moose?
AS if they would be on the shoreline? It was very entertaining to us.

By Wes Scott (Travelnorth) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 07:25 pm:

I was for some reason under the impression that
there weren't many moose in the U.P of Michigan?
How many are required before they start hunting them? I knew they were in the Huron Mts and over
near Paradise area but are they found widely in
the U.P? How many are there? I see somebody mentioned 500 but that seems way too high?

By E. Neil Harri (Ilmayksi) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 08:26 pm:

The official count from January 2009 was 420. That was based on our survey count. If they grow at about 10 percent per year, 500 would be the current estimate.
They are found mostly between Covington Junction and M-95. There are more South of Hwy-41. It has to do with food source. They like the aspen regeneration areas which have been clear cut. They also eat willow that grows along the water slews.There is less snow there too.

By Richard L. Barclay (Notroll) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 08:33 pm:

If you were to distribute the moose evenly across the UP the following numbers would apply.

U. P. Area 16,452 sq mi

People Population 317,258 (2000)
Density 19.3 / sq mi

Moose Population Approx. 500
Density Approx. 1 moose per 33 sq mi

It'd be very hard to find them and for them to find each other. If they all came together for a family reunion in Marquette county at 3425 sq. mi. there would still be a moose every 7 sq. miles approximately. They might be a little closer what with lakes and highways and homes etc. but lets say 5 square miles just for fun. Then try to figure the odds of one hunter arriving at a point where one moose (who isn't particularly fond of hunters in general and would rather be pitching woo to the Lady Mooose) is visible for long enough to shoot on say a week long season and that is a looong shot. The state could make a bit of money on this, especially if they let the winner of a drawing sell their license to someone who really wanted to hunt for say half the sale price! I say go for it, I won't be one to buy a chance at it unless the chance is transferable.

By E. Neil Harri (Ilmayksi) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 10:01 pm:

If they were transferable, they would bring a lot more than half the price. Some states auction a Governors hunt for special speices.
I rememeber the first sheep hunt in the Black Hills that went for something around $50,000. The first Michigan moose hunt could bring more.
Of course, that would take away the chance of anyone who isn't wealthy of getting a tag.

By Frederic W. Koski (Fred) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 10:17 pm:


By Marsha, Genesee/Aura (Marsha) on Tuesday, December 28, 2010 - 10:47 pm:

Obviously we all love it when Neil posts moose or wolf pictures and we get to learn from the comments! I'll never forget when I saw a bull moose up close and personal on Abbaye a couple years ago!

By Mike B. Wishin I was back in the Yoop (Mikeb) on Wednesday, December 29, 2010 - 08:40 am:

I'm sorry I missed this yesterday. Incredible photo, Mr Harri.

Spirited debate about the (possible) Moose hunting in MI, as it should be. Myself, I think it is still a ways off. I believe they may have passed the legislation just as a measure to remove future hurdles when they (DNRE) feel it is safe to move ahead with it. And as Neil pointed out, it is a very good opportunity for the state to make money, with little chance that any Moose would actually be harvested.

As much as some folks may disagree with some decisions that the DNRE make, you must trust that they have the best interest of the species in mind.

I think many people, when they hear 'Moose Hunt', associate the Moose hunt with the yearly whitetail deer hunt. Such an association would understandably elicit an unfavorable response from the majority. Believe me, they are not going to open the hunt to anybody that can buy a license or carry a gun. Bottom line, they've simply worked too hard to get the population to its current state to allow it to be decimated.

If you have any questions about how this Moose hunting could possibly be handled, check out this page for the Pennsylvania Elk Hunt -

Now, the PA Elk program has been going for a few years, and this is just an example of how it may be handled, but this will give you some idea of the restrictions that are put in place to protect the species.

By Richard L. Barclay (Notroll) on Wednesday, December 29, 2010 - 09:06 am:

What I meant by "The state could make a bit of money on this, especially if they let the winner of a drawing sell their license to someone who really wanted to hunt for say half the sale price!" was that if you could buy a chance at the license for say $50.00, win at the drawing and then resell your license to someone with BIG BUCK$ (for let's say your $50,000) with the state taking a share as "transfer" costs there'd be a good chance of the state and some lucky folks making a dime or two first from increased sales of chances and then from transfers.

By Taana Kalliainen (Taanarae) on Wednesday, December 29, 2010 - 01:58 pm:

Very cool picture!! The only time I've seen a moose is when our 6th grade class (a LONG time ago!) went to the 'Moose Lift' way back when. We got to watch them bring in a moose with a helicopter. If I remember right it headed towards the crowd and people had scatter. :D

By Iron Range Dave (Blackhawk) on Thursday, December 30, 2010 - 01:55 pm:

If memory serves me correctly they hunt moose in Minnesota. It is very limited though. You can only get a permit for your group of four once every seven years. Don't quote me on that but I think that is what they do. They are not as easy to get as you might think. I have close up pictures of one once when we spent two weeks in the BWCA. He spent two days just across the bay from our campsite. Once heard one crashing thru the woods on a hike up Oberg Mtn on the north shore as well. Quite an impression on a 13 year old, never saw it, just heard it and saw the tracks later in the day on our walk back down.

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