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Associated Press, Published January 04 2013

DNR to research dwindling Minnesota moose population

ST. PAUL — Minnesota's Department of Natural Resources is launching a moose research project in northeastern Minnesota to determine why the state's population of the animal is declining.

DNR officials will hold a St. Paul news conference Friday to unveil what they're calling a first-of-its-kind project. They'll employ GPS and other technology to help track the animals.

As of last March, Minnesota's moose population was estimated at 4,230 — a 14 percent decline from the previous year's estimate, and less than half what it was in 2006. Wildlife managers have said reasons could include parasites, diseases and warmer weather.

They have said hunting is not to blame, and the DNR allowed a short moose hunting season last fall. The agency has not yet revealed if it will allow a moose hunt this year.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.