One of the last collared moose in the project. Photo courtesy Saskatchewan Farmland Moose Project, Facebook.
Researchers with the Saskatchewan Farmland Moose Project have completed the first phase of their studies and published the first paper on their work.
University of Saskatchewan professor Dr. Ryan Brook is the Project Director and has been gathering data since 2013.
Collars containing GPS devices have been placed on cow moose and the information gathered and analyzed.
Information gathered from GPS collar is revealing specific information on moose, which started moving south about 30 years ago, which started moving south about 30 years ago from their habitat in the northern boreal forest.
“We know that they are feeding on agricultural crops and using wetlands but other than that we had very little understanding of them an certainly the risks that they pose to collisions on highways which is probably the most important area of concern, people getting injured and killed on highways,” he said.
Until now, the study has focused on the habits of cow moose, but Brooks said he hopes that can change in the future.
“Hopefully at some time in the future we will be able to find funding to do the other half of the study should be, looking at the adult male moose and collaring them as well,” he said.
He adds, the behavior of male moose is different from the cows.
“Typically male moose have about twice the home range size and they obviously behave differently and interact differently.”
Researchers also plan to expand the area of their study and will be releasing papers on the moose populations across the prairie provinces.
Work is also being done on the movement of wild boar in Saskatchewan, and results of that research should be ready to be released sometime next year.
For more information on the work, check out the Saskatchewan Farmland Moose Project on Facebook.