First moose cull in Newfoundland National Parks is over:

Got to carry me moose, b’y…” –  Perhaps Buddy Wasisname will get a new song or two out of the current state of moose hunting in Newfoundland. This week marked the end of the first moose cull in Newfoundland’s national parks and the jury is still out on whether or not it was a success.

The province made 500 licenses available between our two National parks – Gros Morne and Terra Nova – with only 400 being applied for and eventually issued. This seems at odds with other parts of the province where moose are less plentiful but there are so many applicants that they have to be entered into a pool system. And the lack of interest in the park licenses certainly isn’t due to a lack of moose – it’s estimated that Gros morne has upwards of 4 moose per square kilometre.

Perhaps the difference boils down to one important rule that hunters in the park must follow: You may not use all-terrain vehicles. This means that any successful hunters would essentially have to carry the quartered meat out on their backs. A potentially distasteful task among those Newfoundlanders who feel strongly about their ATVs.

So what then to do about this perceived problem? We have a couple of suggestions:

  • Someone in Charlottetown could get able-bodied people together and make a business out of lugging moose carcasses out of the woods.
  • Hype carrying your animal out as something to brag about, perhaps even issuing badges – “Terra Nova Moose Lugger” or “Gros Morne Hernia Club”.
Got me Moose - Terra Nova 2011

In all seriousness though, anyone who was fortunate enough to grow up without a 4-wheeler knows that carrying a quarter of moose on your shoulders is like a rite of a passage. And that 8-point bull makes just as good a story as any 18-pointer when you mention that you carried every pound of him out on your own two feet.  So next year why not apply for a license in the park – you’ll be going green and earning bragging rights!

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