Presentation on theme: "Varying snow depths and the effect on moose Movement Alyssa Countway Winter Ecology Spring 2014 Mountain Research Station, University of Colorado, Boulder."— Presentation transcript:
Varying snow depths and the effect on moose Movement Alyssa Countway Winter Ecology Spring 2014 Mountain Research Station, University of Colorado, Boulder Alyssa Countway Winter Ecology Spring 2014 Mountain Research Station, University of Colorado, Boulder
Introduction Moose(Alces alces) have adapted to be able to move through deeper snow depths. This type of travel is at a great expense of energy. What is the preferred depth of snow for moose travel?
Moose are able to move in snow depth to about chest high(70 cm), yet at a great energy cost. As well crusted snow pack can cause injury to the legs and hooves of the moose Moose still are able to forage for grasses in the winter, when there is a small snow pack (Modafferi,1990)
Hypothesis Moose tracks will be found at a higher frequency in the shallower ranges of snow depth during the winter time, in the sub-alpine regions
METHODS Find Moose tracks out in the field Take snow depth measurements along the track in 1 meter increments Set 2 up a 50m linear transect along and intercepting the tracks Take snow depth measurements every 1 m along transect (environment) Repeat Analyze
Discussion No significant differences in Trends were found. Track average depth = 67 cm Though “deep snow can bury and reduce access to forage even in high-quality habitats, which can lead to malnutrition, starvation, and ultimately death”
Discussion Why might I have seen my results? Snow depth is less variable Pack is in optimum moose range Need a larger sample size
Discussion snow quality is behind 90% of variance in snow sinking Though combining snow quality and depth, if accumulation can support ungulate, this supports forage of upper plants
Further Questions How does moose activity, and those factors which influence it shape the ecological landscape How does humans influence the moose activity? How will the moose winter habitat as the climate continues to change?
Conclusion Results showed no correlation between moose activity and snow depth With more data a conclusion may be able to be made Though moose are influenced by snow depth, there are still other factor that control moose behavior
References Modafferi, Ronald D. "Lower Susitna Valley Moose Population Identity and Movement Study." Http://www.arlis.org/docs/vol2/hydropower/APA_DOC_no._4121.pdf. Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration, n.d. Web. Http://www.arlis.org/docs/vol2/hydropower/APA_DOC_no._4121.pd Lundmark, Caroline. "Morphological and Behavioural Adaptations of Moose to Climate, Snow, and Forage." Pub Epsilon. Faculty of Forest Sciences Department of Wildlife, Fish, and Environmental Studies, n.d. Web. "Alces Americanus." Alces Americanus. US Forest Service, n.d. Web. 08 Mar. 2014. Lundmark, Caroline. "Living in Snowy Environments: Quantifying the Influence of Snow on Moose Behavior." INSTAAR, n.d. Web. Telfer, Edmond S. "Winter Habitat Selection by Moose and White-Tailed Deer." Journal of Wildlife Management. Wildlife Society, n.d. Web.