CONCORD — New Hampshire’s 2012 moose season wrapped up on Sunday. While hunters still had time to register their moose at N.H. Fish and Game headquarters or regional offices, preliminary figures show that 174 hunters succeeded in taking their moose during the nine-day season.
With a total of 281 permits issued, this represents a statewide success rate of 62 percent. That’s down from last year, when 71 percent of hunters got their moose. The breakdown for the harvest this year was 61 percent bulls and 39 percent cows. Final season results will be available upon completion of registration data entry and analysis.
Several factors contributed to the increase in the antlerless moose harvest and the decrease in overall success rate, according to Fish and Game moose biologist Kristine Rines.
“There were more antlerless-only moose permits issued this year which helped increase the percentage of cows in the take,” Rines said. “Hunter success overall was also affected by the reduced moose population and the unusually warm weather. By this time of year, moose have grown their heavy winter coats, so they really feel the heat. On warm days, they tend to bed down, making them harder for hunters to find. The first day of the season was decent, but after that, it was much too warm, except very early in the morning, for moose to be moving about.”
Some hunters also reportedly cut their hunts short to head home before the arrival of developing Hurricane Sandy.
Around the state this year, preliminary numbers show moose hunters having a 73 percent success rate in the Connecticut Lakes Region; 82 percent in the North Region; 64 percent in the White Mountain Region; 51 percent in the Central Region; 45 percent in the Southwest Region; and 35 percent in the Southeast Region.
Check out a growing gallery of photos of some of this year’s successful New Hampshire moose hunters at huntnh.com/Hunting/Hunt_species/hunt_moose.htm.
Everyone is invited to get into the spirit of the New Hampshire moose hunt with a limited-edition 2012 New Hampshire moose hunt commemorative shirt, available only through Nov. 23 at huntnh.com/mooseshirt.
In all, more than 13,400 people entered the moose hunt lottery for a chance to win a permit for the New Hampshire moose hunt. About 85 percent of the permits went to New Hampshire residents. The odds of winning a moose permit in the lottery are among the best in the nation, about one in 26 for New Hampshire residents and one in 85 for nonresidents.
The 2013 moose hunt lottery opens in late January and runs through May 31, 2013. Watch huntnh.com for details.