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Fish and Game wants to hear about your urban moose sightings this weekend

(KTUU)
Published: Feb. 20, 2020 at 4:36 PM AKST
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It would be pretty difficult to find an Anchorage resident who doesn’t love the occasional urban moose sighting. Over the weekend of Feb. 21-23, the Department and Fish and Game wants to hear about those sightings for this year’s annual moose survey.

This is the third full survey, according to Area Biologist Dave Battle. He said getting the best set of data to work with can only be done if the public reports their sightings.

“We can drive around all day and we might find a couple moose,” Battle said, “but we’re never going to see the moose that’s behind somebody’s house, bedded in their back yard. It really increases our sample size.”

Battle said outside of the Anchorage bowl, Fish and Game uses helicopters to spot moose from above. Air traffic over the city is too busy for that, so they have to stay grounded while they count.

In 2019, it was calculated that there are around 350 moose in Anchorage. It’s important to keep track of as many as they can, Battle says.

“We need to know how many moose we have so that we can better manage the moose population,” he said, “it affects road-kills, it affects conflicts that happen on trails and in people’s yards, and it even affects the hunting that goes on in the unit.”

Once people call locations of moose in, or if biologists spot one themselves, they take a DNA sample using special darts designed to get a skin sample and drop off of the animal. Biologists say this data is important because it helps them keep track of specific moose, as well as see how many moose in town are related.

To report moose sightings to Fish and Game, you can; call at (907)-267-2530; text at (907)-782-5051; or do it online by clicking

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