Environmental Concerns Leads To Moose Tracking In Rocky Mountains
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Environmental Concerns Leads To Moose Tracking In Rocky Mountains

August 29, 2019


COVERING COLORADO FIRST AT 10:00. THERE’S A NEW NEIGHBOR MOVING INTO ROCKY MOUNTAIN NATIONAL PARK. MOOSE ARE TAKING OVER THE WETLAND. NOW RESEARCHERS WANT TO KNOW WHY. GOOD EVENING. I’M KELLY WERTHMANN. MELISSA GARCIA HEARD FROM THEM TODAY. AND WE KNOW COLORADO IS A GREAT PLACE TO LIVE. BUT RESEARCHERS ARE WORRIED ABOUT HOW FAST THAT MOOSE POPULATION IS GROWING. Reporter: KELLY, RESEARCHERS HAVE SEEN A BIG INCREASE IN MOOSE OVER THE LAST FEW DECADES. AND THAT HAS LED TO A BIG DECREASE IN AN IMPORTANT TYPE OF PLANT. PRIST SEEN VIEWS — PRISTINE VIEWS AND LUSH LANDSCAPES AT ROCKY MOUNTAIN NATIONAL PARK ARE A GROWING HOME TO MOOSE. JUST CHECKED OFF MY BUCKET LIST. Reporter: MOOSE THAT HAVE BECOME USED TO SEEING PEOPLE. THEY TEND TO BE FAIRLY CALM ABOUT IT. AND THAT’S WHAT TENDS TO BE DANGEROUS. IT ENTICES PEOPLE TO MAYBE GET CLOSER THAN THEY SHOULD GET. HANNAH MABALIS SAYS THEY ARE TRACKING THE MOOSE WITH GPS COLLARS TO FIGURE OUT HOW MANY LIVE HERE AND HOW TO BEST MANAGE THEM. WE HAVE A GPS INSIDE THE COLLAR. AND IT WILL GET TWICE-A-DAY- LOCATIONS EVERY DAY, FOR AS LONG AS THAT COLLAR IS ACTIVE. THE VAST MAJORITY OF THESE MAMMALS LIVE ON THE PARK’S EAST SIDE, WHERE THEY’RE MUNCHING ON WILLOW, WILLOW, ALMOST ENTIRELY EATEN DOWN. I WOULDN’T SAY THAT MOOSE ARE DECIMATING HABITAT. BUT THE INFORMATION WE DO HAVE LED US TO ASK THESE QUESTIONS. Reporter: QUESTIONS LIKE WHERE THEY GO AND WHAT THEY DO. THE LAND WATER FLOW LARGELY DETERMINES WHERE MOOSE EAT, LIVE AND REPRODUCE. AS WE KNOW, WATER IN THE WEST IS A BIG DEAL, RIGHT? SO IT’S DISPROPORTIONATELY IMPORTANT. WELL, SO FAR, RESEARCHERS HAVE PUT THOSE TRACKERS ON NINE MOOSE. BUT THEY PLAN TO TRACK ABOUT 40, ONCE THE COLLARS GO ON,

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