Skip to main content

First results in DNR study of dead moose show wolves a factor

  • Author:
  • Updated:

As the Minnesota DNR studies what's killing the state's moose herd, early results suggest wolves are on the list of culprits.

But researchers are also looking at parasites, disease, and competition for food from the state's growing deer herd as other possible explanations for a dramatic drop in moose numbers.

The DNR study involved tranquilizing and collaring 111 moose in northeastern Minnesota. The Duluth News Tribune reports that so far six of the animals have died, two of them after wolf attacks.

The deaths of the other four are attributed to trauma from the process of being captured, tranquilized, and collared.

The Grand Portage band of Chippewa is involved in a similar study in which 19 moose have been equipped with GPS collars. One of those animals was killed by wolves, although a tribal researcher tells the News Tribune the moose appeared to have been weakened by pneumonia.

The gray wolf only recently came off the endangered species list. The first state-regulated wolf hunting season was held last fall, but Minnesota lawmakers are debating whether to suspend wolf hunting for five years.

Separately, the DNR has embarked on a wolf census of sorts -- hoping to get a reasonably accurate count of how many wolves are in the state.

Next Up

Williams Uptown Pub

Williams Uptown Pub & Peanut Bar closes indefinitely after shooting

Reports say police have arrested two suspects in the incident.

Alex Rodríguez

A-Rod wears a Packers hat, Minnesotans lose their minds

The Timberwolves co-owner didn't endear himself to his fan base on Saturday night.

Flickr - Minneapolis police squad - Chad Davis

Police: Man shoots into crowd at funeral reception in Minneapolis

The shooting happened at a reception following a funeral on Saturday afternoon.

Screen Shot 2022-01-23 at 8.37.27 AM

Watch: Jimmy Garoppolo says 'F*** the Packers' after playoff win

The 49ers quarterback congratulated Robbie Gould in spectacular fashion.

Aaron Rodgers

America dunks on Aaron Rodgers after loss to 49ers

The Packers quarterback was destroyed on social media on Saturday night.

Marcus Foligno

Foligno's OT winner gives Wild fans a happy Hockey Day

A slow start gave way to the Wild's fifth win in the past six games.


Winter weather advisory issued as Saturday snow arrives

Not huge totals expected, but any snow will likely impact travel.


Report: Ryan Poles is Vikings' 'top choice' for general manager

Poles was one of two finalists revealed on Friday.

Payton Willis

Willis carries shorthanded Gophers to beat Rutgers

The senior scored a career-high 32 points to end a four-game losing streak.


Charges: St. Paul man had sexual contact 'multiple times' with 12-year-old girl

Marcus Steichen, 21, is charged with first-degree criminal sexual conduct.


Wolf hunt: DNR reports more than 100 wolves killed in first eight days

Minnesota hunters have killed at least 110 wolves in the first eight days of the state's highly controversial wolf hunt, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. The statewide quota for the early hunting season is 200 wolves, which runs through Nov. 18 or until hunters reach the limit.