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Follow moose tracks on the Web

Two moose loose in the Gunnison National Forest can now be tracked on the Internet. Recently, the Colorado Division of Wildlife launched an education program for kids that lets them track, in real time, the movements of two female moose. As of March 17, the two moose were about seven miles northwest of McClure Pass.The two moose were captured in Utah and released on the Grand Mesa last year and are now part of a herd of 28 animals. The two females were fitted with special radio collars that send signals to satellites, using global positioning system technology to determine their longitude and latitude, said Stan Johnson, education coordinator for the DOW.The idea for the program grew out of a classroom project that had students decorate radio collars for moose.”It was kind of like an adopt-a-moose program,” Johnson said. The project was so popular there weren’t enough collars to go around. “… We decided, let’s make one collar that fit everybody,” he said.Actually it was two collars, and the daily coordinates of the two moose are posted on the DOW Web site each day.Now, students – or anyone for that matter – can enter the latest coordinates for the two moose and find out exactly where they are.”While anyone can access the information through our Web site, we believe this project will be especially valuable to students and their teachers,” Johnson said in a prepared statement.On the Web page, kids can read about how moose are reintroduced to an area, just like they were on the Grand Mesa. The page also has information for teachers to help them set up lesson plans to incorporate the moose project into their classroom teaching.Currently, one of the moose is pregnant and should be looking for a place to give birth to her calf, somewhere away from the rest of the herd where she can raise the calf undisturbed, Johnson said. Recently, the moose have ranged between Aspen and Cedaredge on the Gunnison National Forest.To read about the moose tracking project and see their location, go to: wildlife.state.co.us, click on the Education button at the top of the page, then click Student Activities.Contact Donna Gray: 945-8515, ext. 510dgray@postindependent.com


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