Montana Public Radio

wildlife

Map of the Pacific Northwest National Scenic trail.
National Park Service (PD)

The controversy over the Pacific Northwest National Scenic Trail’s (PNT) route through grizzly bear habitat in the Yaak Valley is headed to court. The Yaak Valley Forest Council filed the lawsuit Friday claiming that the U.S. Forest Service failed to evaluate the impacts of the trail on grizzly populations.

The roughly 1,200-mile Pacific Northwest Trail, not to be confused with the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail, would wind from Glacier National Park to the coast of Washington State.

The Montana Department of Environmental Quality opened a 30-day public comment period Tuesday for a proposed major revision at Spring Creek Coal Mine in southeast Montana. The revision could allow about 72 million tons of coal to be mined.

Bear spray is an effective deterrent against attacking bears if it's used correctly, according to Montana Fish, Wildife and Parks.
Josh Burnham / Montana Public Radio

A Montana bear safety organization has just released a new guide explaining how to properly deploy and use bear spray. The group says the new guide is the result of their "deep concern" that the general public is getting a lot of misinformation about bear spray. Not everyone agrees with that assessment.

When wildlife photographers enter an animal’s habitat, they have the potential to disrupt or even threaten an animal’s way of life. 

So does that mean it’s morally wrong to take a wildlife photo? 

A mountain lion in Glacier National Park.
National Park Service (PD)

Two young mountain lions were killed near a Columbia Falls park over the weekend. One was shot and killed by a local homeowner Saturday and the other was killed by police.

Grizzly bear. Stock photo.
iStock

The U.S. Department of the Interior recently changed how federal agencies will apply rules within the Endangered Species Act. The move raises questions about protections for established grizzly bear populations in Montana, Wyoming and Idaho. MTPR's Aaron Bolton explains what the rules mean for uninhabited grizzly ecosystems, like the Bitterroot National Forest.

A grizzly bear visiting a wire hair snag station near Glacier National Park.
Glacier National Park (PD)

Updated 2:20 p.m., August 8, 2019

The Glacier park trails closed Sunday due to grizzly bear activity have re-opened. The Highline, Loop and Swiftcurrent Trail from Swiftcurrent Pass to Granite Park Chalet are now open again. Granite Park backcountry campground remains closed.

White-tailed deer.
(PD)

Hundreds of white-tailed deer tags for a special chronic wasting disease (CWD) hunt near Libby sold out in about two hours Monday. The Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks says the hunt will help managers understand the prevalence of the disease and reduce its spread.

A few young birds walk among the carcasses of pelicans and double-crested cormorants killed by two-inch hail and 70 mph wind Sunday, Aug. 11, 2019, at Big Lake Wildlife Management Area west of Molt.
Monana Fish, Wildlife and Parks

More than 11,000 waterfowl and wetland birds were killed by hail Sunday at the Big Lake Wildlife Management Area west of Billings.

Westslope cutthroat trout.
Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks

Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks is proposing fishing tackle restrictions on certain sections of the Flathead River. The move is meant to protect westslope cutthroat and bull trout as angling pressure increases.

Tackle restrictions would apply upstream of the Teakettle fishing access site off U.S. Highway 2 near Columbia Falls.

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