DNR researchers optimistic about moose population well-being, immediate future
For the 11th year in a row, Minnesota’s moose population remains relatively stable. The 2022 population survey estimates the moose population at 4,700, statistically unchanged from the last survey, which was conducted in 2020.
Although there is no statistically significant change in the estimated population relative to 2020, this year’s estimated number of moose is the highest since 2011, when the population was midway through a steep decline.
Additionally, calves comprised an estimated 19% of the population and the estimated calf-cow ratio was 45 calves per 100 cows. This is the highest both indicators have been since 2005, when the population was near its peak and considered healthy. Both factors are indicators of potential improvement in reproductive success, which has a positive impact on population numbers.
While the continued population stability and indicators of reproductive success are good news, DNR researchers point out that Minnesota moose remain at risk long term. Presently, the moose population is 47% lower than its peak in 2006.
Both the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa and the 1854 Treaty Authority contributed funding and personnel for the 2022 annual survey. The survey is available on the DNR’s moose management page (mndnr.gov/Moose).