Saving Over a Million Acres of Moose Habitat in Minnesota

On the very northeastern edge of Minnesota is an unspoiled, 1.1 million acre wilderness that is laced with more than 1,200 miles of streams, thousands of lakes, and an abundance of sandy beaches and wetlands surrounded by a rich forest. The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is one of the last wild and unspoiled places in the contiguous United States where struggling moose have a chance to recover and thrive in a healthy water habitat that’s essential for their survival.

But right now, Twin Metals, owned by Antofagasta of Chile, is proposing a massive, sulfide-ore copper mine within the Boundary Waters’ watershed, just upstream from these priceless wilderness waterways.

Take ActionPlease urge the U.S. Department of the Interior to safeguard moose and permanently protect the Boundary Waters from sulfide-ore mining.

Moose are at Home in the Water

Wilderness visitors are often surprised to learn how naturally at home moose are in the water. Moose can easily swim for miles without stopping and submerge as deep as 10 feet or more below the water’s surface to feed. In fact, moose calves are born near water, and the species relies on water habitat to avoid and escape from wolves and bears.

Moose. Photo by Skeeze/Pixabay

Moose in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness are often found wading through marsh areas in the summer eating water lilies, wild rice, and other aquatic plants. They are attracted to these pristine waters because the aquatic vegetation has more protein than terrestrial plants and provides crucial nutrients needed to get through winter months. Studies are showing us that a healthy aquatic habitat can be key for the long-term sustainability of moose in the northern woods of Minnesota.

Moose are struggling from the stress of winter tick infestations exacerbated by the impacts of climate change, liver flukes, parasites and deadly brain worm. Friends of wildlife are pressing for the permanent protection of life-giving habitat in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness, to give moose a chance to bounce back and survive.

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Published: August 12, 2016