New York State Legislation has passed a bill to include moose as part of big game hunting.
Last week, New York State Senator Patrick M. Gallivan, announced that the Senate had passed a bill (S-93A) that would allow moose to be included as a part of New York State, big game hunting.
Gallivan mentioned in his press release that, "This legislation will allow the state to better manage the moose population and provide new opportunities for hunters in New York and neighboring states." He also mentioned that, "It will be up to the Department of Environmental Conservation to establish rules and regulations for the taking of moose."
At first glance this may appear as though you can apply to hunt moose come this hunting season, however, after speaking with NYS DEC biologist Jeremy Hurst, that may not be the case.
"Even if there were a law passed that allowed us at some point to [add moose] to the list of hunt-able big game species, we are no where near ready to move into that direction at the moment." Hurst said. "Right now we are involved in a very large research project to explore moose in northern New York to better understand their population dynamic, get a better handle on the population level and assess the likelihood of moose population growth and production, and see where the trajectory is headed."
The state of New York has been doing low-scale monitoring of the moose population for several decades. Winter aerial surveys, road kill reports, as well as nuisance and distress calls, have all been a part of the past research collected. Now, however, the Department of Environmental Conservation has teamed up to get a more scientific assessment of the current moose distribution, abundance and productivity.
The information found within the research can help the DEC make better judgements as to what is going to happen to the moose in the future. This information will also help form any "hunting season" regulations that may potentially open for moose in New York.
As of now, moose are mostly concentrated in early habitat and forest harvest areas along the Adirondack region. Land preserves owned by the state do not see much moose activity due to the restrictions on forest harvesting and tree cutting.
If moose are spotted by hunters or others within the state, they ask that you report your sightings, as with all research, you can never have too much information and data.
So as the question unfolds as to whether there will be an open hunting season on moose in New York State the answer simply will rely on the information found within the research project. As of now, the legislature is passed within the Senate, making it a solid possibility for future hunters.
To see more on the moose research project, report a moose sighting or learn about the moose in Northern New York, visit their website.