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Letter: Let’s deal with cause of moose decline, not just symptoms

There has been a lot of press lately about the declining moose herd in New Hampshire. With last week’s state moose hunting season, there has been even more talk about what’s going on with the lower weights and tick infestation of our moose.

It’s clear that residents care about the moose population because I’ve heard many great suggestions about how to help restore moose numbers. Some suggest inoculating moose against ticks – sort of like a giant dose of your dog’s tick medicine.

Someone else suggested reducing the number of ATVs that scare moose away, or increasing our black bear hunt to keep bears from taking moose calves.

But ultimately, doing any of these things would only be addressing symptoms of the problem and not getting at of the real cause of the moose decline.

Moose are heat stressed. Those large bodies and thick coats can’t withstand our increasingly warmer temperatures.

And exacerbating the moose’s already stressed condition, winter tick populations are skyrocketing – because our winters are too mild to regulate the tick population.

In the winter, ticks land on bare ground instead of snow now, so they continue to populate and infest moose.

I support dealing with the cause of the moose decline, not the symptoms. Let’s join the effort to reduce carbon emissions from coal plants, the largest polluter and contributor to climate change. I urge Sens. Kelly Ayotte and Jeanne Shaheen to take this matter very seriously and help restore our state’s icon and our hunting heritage.

LOREN VALLIERE

Nottingham

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