Cooperative Research Units
Education, Research And Technical Assistance For Managing Our Natural Resources
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Bighorn Moose


January 2017 - December 2020


There has never been a detailed study of moose in the Bighorns. Consequently, seasonal ranges and migration corridors have not been mapped using current methods. Moose in the Bighorns use forested, aspen and willow habitat. However, during winter moose in Area 1 move from willow to heavily forested habitats making them difficult to count using traditional winter trend count methods. This type of movement is less common in Areas 34 and 42. To manage moose into the future, managers need a robust means to evaluate whether the herd is stable, increasing or decreasing. Additionally, moose are not native to the Bighorns. Managers from the Bighorn National Forest have expressed concerns to the Wyoming Game & Fish Department regarding the amount of wild ungulate (especially moose) use of willow and aspen in many areas. The Bighorn National Forest Plan identifies moose as a demand species noting the species is of high public interest. The current Forest Plan notes that moose may be responsible for preventing riparian areas from achieving desired conditions and reducing the establishment of young aspen. Thus, there is a need to understand the intensity of moose browsing and how it interacts with browsing by elk and cattle. This project will mesh nicely with efforts of the Bighorn National Forest to measure forage utilization levels and attempts to identify amount of use by species.


Current Staff

Federal Staff: 101

Masters Students: 239

Phd Students: 154

Post Docs: 55

University Staff: 241

5 Year Summary

Students graduated: 695

Scientific Publications: 1962

Presentations: 4417



Funding Agencies

  • RMEF
  • Wyoming Game and Fish Department
  • Wyoming Wildlife Foundation


Cooperative Research Units Program Headquarters Cooperators

  1. U.S. Geological Survey