Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks

A first: Grizzly in Montana’s Big Snowy Mountains

Officials said the closest grizzly bears had come to the Central Montana island mountain range prior to last week was in 2017. (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)BILLINGS, Mont. — Wildlife officials in Montana have confirmed the presence of a grizzly bear in the Big Snowy Mountains, a first for the region. The Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks said the adult…

Montana looks to keep 1,000 grizzlies amid push to lift protections

Public hunting of the animals could occur at some point in the future if federal officials move forward with plans to remove the population’s threatened species protections. No hunting plans have been crafted, but officials said if a hunt were to occur it would be constrained by the population objectives that were endorsed Thursday.

In Montana, boats coming from Lake Powell undergo additional AIS examination

(Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks photo)With the proliferation of adult quagga mussels in Lake Powell, on the border of Utah and Arizona, watercraft from this lake that are entering Montana will be subject to additional measures at watercraft inspection stations to ensure they are free from aquatic invasive species. Lake Powell is on the Colorado River and invasive mussels are…

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks: Minimizing catch-and-release mortality

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks wants to remind anglers that as reservoir water temperatures increase, mortality associated with catch-and-release also increases. A past study published in The North American Journal of Fisheries Management found that walleye catch-and-release mortality rate rose from zero to 1.8 percent with water temps below 68 degrees to nearly 16 percent when water temps were above…

In Montana, 3 men plead guilty to illegally hunting bull bison

BOZEMAN, Mont. — Three men have pleaded guilty to the illegal hunting and wasting of bull bison north of Yellowstone Park. The Bozeman Daily Chronicle reports that Jesse Darr, Ryley Heidt and Peyton Simmons, all of Park County, were sentenced in justice court for unlawful possession. Each was ordered to pay fines and charges totaling $2,605 and each will lose…

Survey: Elk herd in northern Yellowstone biggest since 2005

Elk numbers in northern Yellowstone National Park are greater than they’ve been in 13 years, according to a survey from Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks. Results from the two-day survey, released yesterday, show a count of more than 7,500 in the area, a 40 percent increase from 2017. State scientists say good weather during the aerial survey contributed to the…

A perch mecca in Montana

Perch – not walleye or trout, the state’s poster fish species – attracting big numbers of ice anglers from across Montana and beyond to Holter Lake, boasting unexplainable quantity and quality of fish.