USING HUNTING STATISTICS TO ESTIMATE DENSITY, COW-CALF RATIO AND HARVEST RATE OF MOOSE IN QUÉBEC
Moose (Alces alces) density, estimated from eleven aerial surveys, was inversely related to harvest effort (hunter-days per moose killed), and positively related to moose harvest per 10 km2. A positive linear relationship was found between the number of calves per 100 females counted in eleven helicopter surveys and the number of calves per 100 females in the harvest. This last hunting statistic was positively related to the percentage of yearlings and milking females in the harvest; the relationship was negative with the mean age of females. Harvest rate was positively related to the three hunting statistics associated with recruitment i.e. number of calves per 100 females, percentage of milking females and percentage of yearlings. Harvest rate was negatively related to adult sex ratio and mean age of males in the harvest. Assessment of moose density, recruitment and harvest rate through hunting statistics is possible, but confidence intervals of single predictions are wide.
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