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Explore our latest coverage of environmental issues, climate change and more.

How Tiny Ticks And Brainworms Are Bringing Down The Mighty Moose

Moose in Vermont and across New England are dwindling due to more deaths from parasites like winter ticks, which are also linked to poor calving rates and low survivorship among new calves.
George Bosworth
/
Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department
Moose in Vermont and across New England are dwindling due to more deaths from parasites like winter ticks, which are also linked to poor calving rates and low survivorship among new calves.

As Vermont's moose population continues to decline, state wildlife biologists say a warming climate is behind an explosion in winter ticks and "skyrocketing" levels of brain parasites, both of which are keeping moose mortality high and calving rates low.

Faced with a dwindling population and mounting threats, what does the future of moose management—and moose hunting—look like in Vermont?

Scott Darling, a senior biologist from the Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife, explains how parasites like winter ticks and brain worms are leading to declining health, fewer calves and an overall drop in the moose population across Vermont and neighboring states. And he'll discuss how new studies show  that cutting back on hunting may not be a solution to managing the moose population back to stability.

The below video was taken in New Hampshire, but Vermont Fish & Wildlife says a similar approach is being used here in Vermont to collar and track moose (video credit: New Hampshire Fish and Game, courtesy):

Broadcast live on Tuesday, Jan. 2, 2018 at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.

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