It's hard to understand how a species of animal, known to be in decline, could withstand being the target of more hunters.
Yet that was the theory offered up by former environment minister Ross Wiseman, just a year ago.
It didn't make sense then, and it doesn't make sense now.
Our revival of the great moose debate was prompted by environment minister Terry French's speech to the Rotary Club of St. John's last week.
The minister told the crowd that the moose population on the island of Newfoundland had declined to the point that we should worry.
We've know since last year, confirmed by former minister Ross Wiseman, that the moose population was dropping. Then minister Wiseman told The Packet in an interview last April - that the moose population had dropped to about 117,000 animals. The population, according to Wiseman, had peaked in the mid-1990s at about 150,000 animals.
Despite the numbers, minister Wiseman and the department decided to make more moose hunting licences available to hunters and extend the season for hunting.
Bear in mind, this was during the heyday of another intense public debate over moose-vehicle accidents. The Save Our People Action Committee (SOPAC) was demanding government do something to prevent moose-vehicle accidents on the highways.
Also bear in mind, we were just six and a half months away from the October provincial election, and moose vs cars was a 'hot button' topic, and members of SOPAC were pushing it every day.
When minister Wiseman announced more moose hunting licences, members of SOPAC reacted positively. There was a fair bit of back-patting and a potentially contentious pre-election issue fizzled.
The extra moose licences was nothing more than a political ploy; a game of numbers aimed at killing potential controversy more than killing moose.
The evidence we have to support that argument is actually in the department's own statistics - numbers uncovered by Packet reporter Adam Randell when he started researching the hunter success rates in the province for the previous four years.
His investigation - pulling statistics from the wildlife division's own Hunting and Trapping guides - showed that each year, from 2007 and on, extra moose hunting licences were handed. However, the additional licences didn't add up to extra moose killed.
In 2006-07, 26,255 licences resulted in 19,428 animals taken.
In 2007-08, 26,725 licences nabbed 18,948 moose (1,000 less than the previous year).
The following season, 27,235 licences were issued, and 19,745 moose were killed.
And in 2009-10, 27,855 licences resulted in 19,749 kills.
The information for the 2010-11 and 2011-12 hunting seasons is not yet available.
However, based on the trend of the past four years, it's very plausible that the extra licences issued did not see more moose killed.
We know part of the reason for that may be that some license holders don't get out to hunt. However, there are hunters who have spent hours scouring the bush for a moose, from start of hunting season to the end, with no luck at all because the animals are not as abundant as they used to be.
We've heard stories of experienced hunters who, traipsing through areas that were known to be prime moose territory five to 10 years ago, walked miles for days and found nothing.
French's speech did not tell us anything we did not know before, but it was still a revelation of sorts.
What it tells us is that the provincial government has no real idea how to manage the moose population or any clue on what an ideal number of moose is for the geographical area the size of this island.
Moose census surveys are not carried out with regularity - the best the province has been able to do is aim for a survey once every decade in each of the 60 moose management areas.
It also tells us that the decision by French's predecessor, Wiseman, made absolutely no sense - didn't then, doesn't now.
Wiseman told The Packet last year the moose population could handle the pressure of the extra 5,000 licences that were issued for the 2011-12 hunting season.
"Moose are a pretty robust animal and they'll multiply fast. There is no danger of extinction of the herd; they can sustain a more robust hunt than we've had in the past."
This was nothing more than a twist of words. The department already knew, when they issued the extra licences, that it would not mean more moose killed, or very few extra moose killed, because of the pattern of success from the previous four hunts.
The only target government had in mind, when they issued the extra licences, was SOPAC and their Open Line attacks on government. Management of public perception, not moose management, was the primary goal.
Why? Because moose don't vote.