Input sought for 5-year moose management plan
The Newfoundland and Labrador government is looking for feedback as it develops a five-year moose management plan for the island portion of the province.
"We want to hear first-hand the various perceptions and opinions on moose management in the province and capture any factors that differentiate one region of the province from another, if indeed they do exist," Environment and Conservation Minister Terry French said in a press release.
Public consultations will be held over a two-week period, wrapping up on Nov. 1.
Government officials are asking anyone interested in attending a session to pre-register by calling toll-free at 1-855-637-2064 or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Written submissions — which can also be sent by e-mail — must be received no later than Nov. 8.
An online questionnaire will also be available on the Department of Environment and Conservation website from Oct. 22 to Nov. 8.
"We recognize that, along with hunting, there are many other factors we need to consider such as forest degradation and the issue of moose along our highways," French said.
"The more information we garner from these consultations, the better informed our decision-making process for a five-year moose management plan will be. I encourage all residents to share their views and ideas to help ensure our future decisions reflect a balanced approach based on both feedback and science."
Past calls for culls
There have been recent calls for a cull of the province's moose population, as part of an effort to reduce moose-vehicle collisions.
Last summer, Richard Cashin, chair of an advisory group for the the Save Our People Action Committee, suggested killing 50,000 of the animals.
Moose-vehicle accidents remain a constant problem on Newfoundland highways.
The province has taken other moves to address the issue, including a pilot project to install fencing along some stretches of highway, and clearing roadside brush to improve visibility.
The government has also widened the annual hunt to help bring the population under control. Last year, more than 5,000 new licences were added to the annual pool, bringing the 2011 quota to 33,645.