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48th North American Moose Conference and Workshop: Alyeska Resort, Girdwood, Alaska: 28 April-1 May 2014.

The 49th North American Moose Conference and Workshop took place at the scenic Alyeska Resort in Girdwood, Alaska on April 18-May 1, 2014. The Conference was a collaborative effort by ADF&G Division of Wildlife Conservation (DWC) staff members from all over the state and co-hosted by the Outdoor Heritage Foundation of Alaska (OHFA). Although there was strong representation from Alaska, delegates traveled from Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, five Canadian provinces, and fourteen U.S. states to discuss "Finding Solutions for Future Generations."

The workshop, entitled "Integrating social and ecological data: Approaches for informing moose management" was organized and lead by instructors Dr. Todd Brinkman (UAF) and Kalin Seaton (DWC) and had over 70 participants. It began with a brief introduction on human dimensions of wildlife (HDW) by Dr. Brinkman. Using an extensive dataset on moose in Interior Alaska, the instructors provided a spatially- and temporally-explicit framework for integrating social and ecological data that could be used to inform moose management and provide a more holistic view of moose harvest opportunity. Participants were asked to apply the framework to the region where they were engaged in either moose research or management. This was followed up by a group discussion on the pitfalls and the potential for expanded integration of the HDW into moose management.

The Conference began on Monday afternoon with the plenary session, entitled "Alaskan perspectives on moose management." UAF Professor emeritus Dr. Terry Chapin gave the keynote speech, which was entitled "Climate change impacts on Alaskan ecosystems, wildlife, and communities: Preparing for expected changes and surprises." His talk, and those of the others during this session, highlighted the challenges that lie ahead for moose management in Alaska. Climate change is an overriding concern with its implications for moose population status, as well as economic changes which may have far-reaching impacts on habitat, subsistence, and funding of management and research on moose in Alaska. Dr. David Klein gave an interesting historical perspective to management of moose on the Kenai Peninsula, and emphasized the need to consider habitat in that context. Tom Paragi discussed the proposed harvest of boreal forest to meet biofuel demand in the Tanana Valley, and its implications for the management of moose and other wildlife. Bruce Dale gave an excellent overview on intensive management, and Todd Brinkman discussed how an HDW approach can inform Alaskan moose management in the future. This was followed by a panel discussion.

Tuesday and Thursday were dedicated to eight topic sessions on various aspects of moose biology and management. The Banquet was held Wednesday evening and included an excellent performance by the Cupiit Yurartet Native dancers. Seven newcomers, eight students, and three student interns received Travel Awards thanks to a generous contribution by Alces. The Order of Alces was presented to all organizing committee members. Dr. Ed Addison, wildlife disease expert and Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources Research Scientist (retired), received the Distinguished Moose Biologist Award for his longstanding contributions to moose management, including his pioneering research with winter ticks among other topics.

Wednesday was reserved for excursions and participants could choose between a visit to the University of Alaska Matanuska Research Center to learn about captive moose research, a day to trip to Seward Alaska at the head of Resurrection Bay, a hike in the Chugach Mountains, or moose education day at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center (AWCC). The weather was perfect to showcase the natural beauty of the region.

We sincerely thank our sponsors, including OHFA, AWCC, Advanced Telemetry Systems, Alaska Professional Hunters Association, Conoco Phillips Alaska, Inc., Exxon Mobil, Lotek, Matson's Lab, Safari Club International Alaska Chapter, and Vectronic Aerospace.

CHAIR: Bruce Dale

HOSTS: Alaska Department of Fish & Game and Outdoor Heritage Foundation of Alaska

LOCATION: Alyeska Resort, Girdwood, Alaska

DATE: 28 April-1 May 2014

NUMBER OF DELEGATES/PARTICIPANTS: 145
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Publication:Alces
Article Type:Conference notes
Geographic Code:1U9AK
Date:Jan 1, 2015
Words:631
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