MTPR

Nick Mott

Nick Mott is a reporter who also works as producer at Threshold, a podcast and radio show. He holds an MA in journalism with a focus in environmental reporting from the University of Colorado Boulder.

Canada lynx.
(PD)

The timber industry, land managers and environmentalists are at loggerheads in lynx country. Canada lynx have been listed as “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act since 2000, they’re at the heart of legal battles over forest management; and in 2017, Montana politicians blamed a lawsuit over lynx protection for the 18,000-acre Park Creek Fire outside Lincoln, along with other blazes across the state.

A boat at the Flathead Lake Biological Station.
Corin Cates-Carney / Montana Public Radio

The Flathead Lake Biological Station added a new monitoring site in Polson Bay last month that could help prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species and generate valuable information about the ecosystem.

Jim Elser, director of the Station, says near Polson the lake is shallower and warmer than at the other monitoring station, and sees different kinds of use.

Two Medicine River, in the Badger-Two Medicine area.
Courtesy Gene Sentz

The Blackfeet Nation says it will ask a federal court on Monday to continue a fight to protect the Badger-Two Medicine area, after the US Interior Department reversed course on oil leases there.

"That was a surprise, we were totally caught off guard," says Tyson Runningwolf, a Democratic representative from Browning, and a member of the tribe.

"There’s one thing that unifies the tribe always and that’s protecting the Badger-Two Medicine at all costs, whatever it takes to be involved in protecting it from oil and gas development and protecting that sacred area," he says.

Vanessa Fields, planning team leader for the National Bison Range, presenting at the public meeting in Polson May 1, 2019.
Nick Mott / Montana Public Radio


The latest step in a years-long process laying out the future of the National Bison Range Monday night dredged up questions of race and public land ownership that have lingered since a failed 2016 proposal to transfer the refuge to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes. 

Watercraft Inspection Station
Nick Mott / Montana Public Radio

The Montana Legislature last week tweaked the way it raises money to prevent the spread of zebra and quagga mussels in Montana waterways. The budget to do so remained about the same, but who’s paying for it changed a little.

Map showing the area between estimated occupied grizzly bear range in the NCDE to the north and the GYE to the south.
Lisa Landenburger, USGS - Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team. Public domain. Source: Peck et al. 2017.

Don’t expect the federal government to propose removing grizzly bears in Northwest Montana from the endangered species list anytime soon, officials say.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Grizzly Bear Recovery Coordinator Hilary Cooley says it’s complicated trying to prove in court that the grizzly population is recovered.

Causes of known and probable documented mortalities of grizzly bear in the NCDE.
Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks


On Tuesday, grizzly bear managers announced that a representative from Montana’s Department of Transportation will be joining their committee in hopes of reducing a growing number of bear deaths on highways.

A sign at the National Bison Range in northwest Montana.
Josh Burnham / Montana Public Radio


New possibilities for management of the National Bison Range north of Missoula are out, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is taking public comment on them at three meetings this week. 

A graphic of grizzly locations from collared bears within five miles of the Swan River Community Hall. Red dots are female bears and blue are males. Presented April 26, 2019.
Nick Mott / Montana Public Radio

Wildlife officials received 150 calls related to grizzly conflicts with people in northwest Montana last year, a Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP) report released last week says. An event in Bigfork Thursday night was geared towards reducing those conflicts and helping the growing populations of both people and grizzlies in bear country get along.

State and local comparison of maximum budgets and cost per student.
Kalispell Public Schools

Three years after a successful bond request to expand schools, Kalispell Public Schools are asking voters to upgrade technology and programming at the district’s high schools for the first time in more than a decade.

Ballots for the levy were sent Monday, asking for $1.2 million to benefit 2,900 high school students taking classes at Flathead and Glacier High Schools, the Linderman Education Center, and the Agricultural Education Center.

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