The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) recently completed its initial review of a petition to have the northwestern subspecies of moose (Alces alces andersoni) listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The review found that the petition, submitted by the Center for Biological Diversity and Honor the Earth, provided “substantial scientific or commercial information” that the subspecies warranted listing under the ESA. This particular subspecies of moose is found in Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin. State officials, such as those from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR), say they will be assisting the USFWS in determining the moose’s status.

“Moose are one of Michigan’s iconic wildlife species,” said Michigan DNR Wildlife Division Chief Russ Mason in a press release.

The species has also had a checkered history in the Wolverine State. Moose were once widespread across both the Upper and Lower Peninsulas, until the destruction of their habitat, commercial hunting, and disease drove the animal from the state. A reintroduction attempt in the 1930s failed, and it was not until the 1980s when officials were able to secure 59 moose from Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario and transport them to Marquette County.

“In Michigan, the moose population has declined for a variety of reasons, including habitat loss, predation and climate change,” Mason said. “Moose thrive in cold conditions due to their thick insulating fur, long legs and wide feet. Warmer temperatures put moose at risk of overheating, which causes malnutrition and immune system concerns.”

These days, there are an estimated 500 moose in the Upper Peninsula. Moose are still considered a “species of special concern” in Michigan, but that status affords the species with no special protections. The USFWS is currently holding a 60-day comment period for the petition. Should the subspecies be listed in the ESA, the moose will be given all the protections that come with it as well. The process is not a quick one, however, and the USFWS will take a comprehensive look at the overall population of the moose, as well as possible threats, before a decision is made. It is possible that the USFWS rejects the petition and decides against listing the moose, does indeed list the moose under the ESA, or simply sets the subspecies as a candidate for listing. Alces alces andersoni is also known as Western moose, although the petition only mentions the population living in northwestern United States.

Image courtesy Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

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7 thoughts on “Wildlife Officials: Northwestern Subspecies of Moose might be Listed as Endangered

  1. Oh look the wolves are wiping out the moose now the same group the greedy welfare lawyers (CBD) are suing to list the moose that their wolves are wiping out. All so they can get filthy rich off the taxpayers. What a scam.

  2. No doubt. The Center for Biological Stupidity is at it again. Now they need to protect the moose that their pet wolves are eating.These guys are too much. Any judge that sends money their way should be hung by their neck till dead. Drop the wolves and keep the Moose and do at least one thing right. Center for Biological Stupidity has got to go.

  3. I knew this would happen. I called it over a year ago. It is a subversive action taken to remove a species from the list of animals that can be hunted. It is to “veto” Americans rights to hunt and fish. They don’t care that the wolves are decimating the moose population. It is the spade that’s turning the dirt. They are chipping away at your rights and calling it a mystery. Yeah, yeah, I’ve heard it before, “they aren’t doing that!”, “don’t you know some odd frickin dollar amount each year comes in from hunting and fishing?” “It drives a lot of the economy….”Duh. “They want the money….” No they don’t. Every single dipshit beaurocracy in the Federal Govt is completely bankrupt. They don’t care about that either. It is a mechanism to end our rights.

  4. The Center for Biological Diversity doesn’t care squat about moose ,or wolves in Michigan . Their agenda is elimination ! Elimination of hunting ,hunters , hunter’s guns , your guns , and finally … your freedom ! They want a single ,powerful government running everything everywhere . With them in charge of course . The CBD is another head of that evil ,malignant Hydra .

  5. What most of the educational-facts challenged seem to miss is that climate change is really impacting, the wildlife are the first to be impacted and any farmer or real outdoor type will notice the changes way before the pols and special interest lobby folks start their well financed spin. Aks folks who are in contact with nature daily and they will explain it is really starting to warm up.. regardless of what Trump/R’s and their lobbyists babble about. Lots of hunting is now slowly being impacted as well as most outdoor activity. The Moose and others are just the canary in the mine, so let’s stop the rants and start taking actions, as each day we read about new records in weather, not some childish trumpish fool remarks about those with the real facts..

    1. LMAO Sorry You have been smoking so much drugs you lost your mind. Before CDB interest lobby folks start their well financed spin YES WE THE PEOPLE WHO LIVE NEAR WOLVES EVERY DAY KNOW THE TRUTH. Clearly with the fairy tale you are spinning is hilarious. Funny the moose studies done in Minnesota proved the number 1 killer of moose calves was WOLVES. Duh your climate change fraud was not even listed on the chart. That is what happen you want believe the radical left lunatics Like Bernie. You are right the moose is the canary in the coal mine. The science and facts are clear. Wolves destroy the ecosystem. Back to your fairy tale land where the wolves are riding on the backs of unicorns.

  6. One of the most glaring errors of this article starts with the title, where they begin with the “Northwestern” subspecies & then go on to write solely about the North Central region of our nation. Even our elementar students should know the difference. As for the climate & population environmental changes, yes they have had some effect, but repeated studies have also proven the main culprit to be the reintroduction of wolves throughout the area as having the most disastrous effect due both to their ravenous appetites & their natural habit of playful killing of deer elk & moose. This is just another camouflaged attempt by the anti hunters to eliminate our hunting rights & heritage.

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