MTPR

invasive species

An aquatic invasive species inspection station in Montana.
Nick Mott / Montana Public Radio

A coalition of state, federal, tribal and private organizations dedicated to protecting the Columbia River Watershed from aquatic invasive species (AIS) met in Polson Wednesday. They said building connections between local groups and water managers will be crucial to prevent the spread of zebra and quagga mussels in Montana.

This sign from Minnesota gives a glimpse into one possible future if invasive mussels become established in Montana.
Nicky Ouellet / Montana Public Radio

If invasive zebra and quagga mussels were to infest lakes in Montana, the state could lose more than a $230 million per year in mitigation costs and lost revenue, according to a report released Thursday from the Montana Invasive Species Council.

Boat propeller encrusted with invasive mussels.
National Parks Service (PD)

A summit that could shape the future of invasive species policy in Montana will take place next week in Helena.

Stephanie Hester, coordinator for the Montana Invasive Species Council, says invasive species management in Montana spans the Departments of Agriculture, Livestock, Fish, Wildlife and Parks, and other organizations.

Invasive species decontamination in Montana includes some firefighting aircraft
Nicky Ouellet

Non-native species in Montana have a way of making their presence known.

In June a KULR TV reported this from near the Ft. Belknap reservation:

“Trooper Matt Finley says the driver of the vehicle swerved to avoid hitting a kangaroo,” said Angela Marshall.

Awareness of mussels in Montana, 2017 and 2018.
UM Institute for Tourism and Recreation Research

More Montanans are aware of the threat of invasive species this year compared to last year. That’s according to a new study by the University of Montana.

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