MTPR

Chelcie Cargill

Lawmakers Consider The Future Of Bison In Montana

Mar 25, 2019
Bison in Yellowstone National Park.
Josh Burnham (CC-BY-2.0)

Debates are intensifying at the Montana Legislature over the state’s management of North America’s largest land mammal: The American bison.

Some argue bison are a critical cultural, spiritual and historical resource. Others argue bison pose a threat to the health and well-being of cattle. Now, legislators are considering a number of bills that would decide where bison are allowed to graze, and which government entity gets to make that decision.

The U.S Senate Monday confirmed Sonny Perdue as secretary of the United States Department of Agriculture . USDA oversees ag and forest policies directly affecting rural states like Montana.

Ag Bill Pushes For State Regulation Over Local Control

Feb 8, 2017
Hay field. File photo.
PD

Lawmakers in Helena will consider a bill that would strip local governments’ authority to regulate the agricultural industry with the aim of providing consistency for farming techniques across the state. Senate Bill 155 would mean any regulations dealing with agricultural processes or seed usage would have to come from the state.

NPS is proposing to send some bison to tribal land rather than slaughter.
PD

Yellowstone National Park is trying to take a new direction in bison management. The National Park Service has a plan to shift away from its nearly-annual practice of sending bison to slaughter to control population growth.

Sage grouse.
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Pacific Southwest Region (PD)

State conservation officials are holding public hearings in greater sage grouse habitat this week to listen to the concerns and comments of private landowners.