Montana Public Radio

Montana Fish Wildlife & Parks

Cow elk.
PD

A citizens group met for the first time Thursday to begin the process of revising the 15-year-old statewide elk management plan in Montana.

Elk numbers in Montana have rebounded from about 8,000 in the 1920s to more than 150,000 today. But agreeing on how many of those ungulates there should be — and where — is a complicated affair.

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks logo on the side of a department truck.
Josh Burnham / Montana Public Radio

Montana's Republican Governor-elect Greg Gianforte announced his transition advisory team for the department of Fish, Wildlife & Parks. 

A press release Monday says the team will review candidates for the next director of FWP. 

Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks (FWP) is advising people to limit the amount of fish they eat from Piedmont Pond south of Whitehall after elevated levels of arsenic were detected in the water.

Long term exposure to arsenic can cause cancer and skin lesions, according to the World Health Organization. It’s also been linked to negative cognitive development and death in young children.

In a press release on Sept. 22, FWP said women of child bearing age and children younger than seven shouldn’t eat more than one small fish from the pond per month.

A citizen committee appointed by Gov. Steve Bullock finalized a report on how the state should manage grizzly bears last week. They envisioned a future with fully recovered populations of grizzlies in Montana, but could not agree on what that future looks like, in particular when it comes to hunting.

Montana Bill Would Make Hunting And Fishing A Constitutional Right
Flickr User Jeff Noble (CC-BY-2)

Montana is changing how it handles the animals harvested in CWD management zones this hunting season, and hunters will now be able to move deer, elk and moose carcasses across management zone borders.

Meant to simplify the rules aimed at preventing CWD’s spread, the change shifts the responsibility of properly disposing of animal remains onto hunters.

Bighorn sheep
(PD)

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Montana wildlife officials plan to restore bighorn sheep to a southwestern Montana mountain range where the animals had been killed off due to disease.

Fish, Wildlife and Parks officials plan to transplant the sheep from Wild Horse Island on Flathead Lake to the Tendoy Mountains near Lima, the Independent Record reported.

Nathan Cook, FWP fisheries biologist, Beau Downing, Upper Clark Fork Restoration Manager with Montana's Resource Damage Program, & Alex Leone, restoration specialist with Clark Fork Coalition, scout deposits of mine waste along the upper Clark Fork River
Nick Mott / Montana Public Radio

The state started new work this week to prevent toxic metals in century-old mine waste from seeping into the Upper Clark Fork River. 

On a warm August morning, representatives of Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, the state’s Natural Resource Damage Program, and the nonprofit Clark Fork Coalition and I set out on a bright green raft for a float just south of Deer Lodge.

Satellite view of Flathead Lake in western Montana.
Copernicus Sentinel data 2018 for Sentinel data

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks plans to establish a new state park on Flathead Lake. The deal announced Monday would add a 106-acre public park in Somers.

Lethal Bat Fungus Found In Six Montana Counties

Aug 11, 2020

Montana wildlife officials have detected a fungus that causes a deadly bat disease in at least six counties.

Lauri Hanauska-Brown, the nongame wildlife management bureau chief for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP), says the fungus that causes white nose syndrome in bats has been found in Sheridan, Daniels, Valley, Philips, Richland and Fallon counties since June.

Mike Madel, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks bear management biologist.
Josh Burnham / Montana Public Radio

A long-time Montana grizzly bear biologist is no longer with the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks, officials confirmed.

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