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Montana news about the environment, natural resources, wildlife, climate change and more.

FWP is taking comment on proposed 115,000-acre conservation easement

Montana Great Outdoors Conservation Project map
Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks
Montana Great Outdoors Conservation Project map

State wildlife and park officials are asking for public comment on a potential conservation easement on nearly 115,000 acres of private timberlands in northwest Montana.

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks is working with the Trust for Public Land and landowners Southern Pine Plantations and Green Diamond Resource Company on the project.

The easement would protect public access and recreation on private timberlands around the Thompson Chain of Lakes in Flathead, Lincoln and Sanders counties. The land already provides hunting and fishing opportunities and is important habitat for deer, elk and moose as well as threatened species like grizzly bears and Canada lynx.

Federal and state funding as well as donations secured by the Trust for Public Land would likely fund the purchase of the easement.

FWP is taking public comment through March 4.

Aaron Bolton is Montana Public Radio's Flathead Valley reporter.
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