Sharp reductions in moose permits in both New Hampshire and Vermont are being proposed ahead of the 2017 hunting seasons in both states.
Believed to be caused by shorter, warmer winters, the area’s moose populations have been struggling, to say the least. Over the past decade or so, the moose populations in both states were actually exceeding carry capacity, where Vermont hunters had a shot at one of more than 1,000 permits and New Hampshire hunters had roughly 675 moose permits available.
Fast forward to today and the decline is truly staggering. As proposals now indicate that Vermont is aiming to issue only 80 bull-only moose hunting permits, compared to 160 a year ago and New Hampshire is set to offer just 51 either-sex tag permits.
Biologists are blaming infestations of winter ticks and brainworm, both parasites that thrive in warmer winter conditions. Recent studies in New Hampshire have highlighted that roughly 80 percent of moose calves in the northern portion of the state die each year from winter tick infestations.