CONCORD – For nine exciting days, October 17-25, a group of lucky moose permit holders and their hunting partners will have the experience of a lifetime taking part in New Hampshire’s annual moose hunt.
A total of 49 permit holders were drawn in this year’s lottery, randomly selected by computer from a pool of more than 5,800 applicants. Also, one charitable permit each was issued to the New Hampshire Wildlife Heritage Foundation and the New Hampshire Wildlife Federation Dream Hunt program. In 2019, New Hampshire hunters had a statewide success rate of 76% when 38 moose were harvested.
Each hunter with a moose permit will be assigned to hunt in one of twenty-two Wildlife Management Units (WMU) throughout the state. Most of these hunters have spent considerable time already scouting potential hunting spots in their assigned areas. After taking a moose, hunters must have the animals registered and inspected at one of six check stations around the state where wildlife biologists inspect each moose to collect valuable data about the overall health and productivity of the moose herd. You can find a list of moose check stations at www.huntnh.com/hunting/moose.html.
The moose hunt has been an annual event in New Hampshire for more than 30 years. The state’s first modern-day moose hunt took place in 1988, with 75 permits issued in the North Country. At that time, New Hampshire was home to about 1,600 moose. Today, New Hampshire has about 3,300 moose.
Hunters are reminded to avoid consuming moose liver and kidney. Studies conducted by the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department and the US Fish & Wildlife Service have shown high levels of cadmium in some moose livers and kidneys sampled. As a result, officials from the Environmental Health Program at the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services recommend that no moose kidney be consumed, and refraining from liver consumption is recommended. If individuals choose to eat moose liver, it should be from an animal 1.5 years of age or younger. If the moose is older than that, consumption should be limited to a maximum of two 6-ounce portions of moose liver per year. Biologists at moose check stations can determine the age of the animal for hunters. If you have questions about this issue, call David Gordon, DES Environmental Health Program, at 603-271-4608.
Learn more about moose hunting in New Hampshire at www.huntnh.com/hunting/moose.html.