wildlife committee meeting; Bear Consciousness Stamps Waterfowl. buy land

The Wildlife Committee will meet on October 20

The Montana Fish and Wildlife Commission will meet at 8:30 a.m. on October 20 via Zoom.

The meeting will be broadcast live on the FWP website and the committee will receive public comments on the agenda items via Zoom. To comment via Zoom, you must register on the FWP website. The registration link will be available from noon on October 13 until noon on October 19. The public will also be able to comment in person at any FWP regional office.

The committee makes final decisions on:

• Acquisition of the easement and building area in Dunford Pond

• 2023 annual work plan for deer management in areas affected by brucellosis

• Renewal of pasture leases in the Fleecer Mountain Wildlife Management (WMA) area

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Haver urban management action plan for deer

• Bad Rock Canyon WMA Fishing Regulations

• Extension of the fishing regulations for the year 2022 until the fishing season 2023

• Half Moon Slough Petition

• Policy for submitting rule-making petitions to the Commission

FWP ensures that its meetings are fully accessible to people with special needs. To request arrangements, call FWP at 406-444-3186.

For the full agenda, background on scheduled topics and general comments, go to the FWP’s Fish and Wildlife Committee page.

The FWP website provides a live audio feed of every Fish and Wildlife Committee meeting.

Urge residents to keep food from bears

During the fall, bears are busy eating anything they can fatten in order to hibernate.

To keep both bears and humans safe, Montana residents need to keep the property clean and free of any attractions. Common attractions include exposed trash cans, barbecue grills, and fruit trees.

porch grizzly

A pair of bears invaded unsafe food and litter on a balcony in Flathead Valley.

Courtesy of Montana FWP

Lately, Lockwood, Big Timber, Absarokee, and other communities have had more bear struggles than usual. Natural food sources such as berries are in short supply this year, so bears are more likely to forage in residential areas. Montana is bear country and all residents should be prepared for the presence of bears, even in neighborhoods.

To stay safe and prevent bears from getting into trouble, FWP is asking residents to eliminate any chance for bears to find food in or around their homes, businesses, and vehicles. Residents must store rubbish, barbecue grills, pet food, horse pellets and livestock feed in an enclosed building. They should remove all bird feeders and clean up apples, berries, and other potential food sources from the yard. Bear prevention also includes thoroughly cleaning the surfaces and patios around grilling areas to remove odors from previous cooking.

Finding food before urination season is the bear’s only goal at this time of year. The bear will not stay in an area where attractants have been secured, property is clean, and food is unavailable.

If you see a bear near your accommodation or need to report a conflict, please contact your local bear specialist at the contact number on the FWP website: https://fwp.mt.gov/conservation/wildlife-management/bear/contact.

For more information on staying safe in Bear country, please visit:


Wildlife Special Wildlife Panel to Meet

The Private Land/Public Wildlife Advisory Committee will meet from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday in Room 152 of the Montana State Capitol in Helena.

The 13-member advisory committee, appointed by the governor, is tasked with reviewing FWP access programs and making recommendations to help achieve program goals and maintain good relationships between fishermen and landowners. The members are Ed Bell, President of Helena, Eric Albus of Hinsdale, Terani Prost of Billings, Cynthia Cohan of Butt, Lee Cornwell of Glasgow, Paul Ellis of Bozeman, Everett Headley of Stephensville, Donna MacDonald of Alder, Rod Buchki of Jordan, Rich Roth Big Sandy, Raymond Rouge of Superior, Drew Steinberger of Billings, and Dale Tribe of Miles City.

  • Elk Hunting Access Agreements (EHA) / 454 Programs
    • Ox: ratio of cows to quota areas o licensing inputs for land owner participation in EHA / landowner preference
    • PLPW Discuss / Consider Additional Recommendations
  • Maximum block management payments and payment analysis per hunter day
  • PALA: Program Registration and Evaluation/Department Process
  • Discuss/revise recommendations to a program of work for work
  • PLPW Initiatives Improving Hunter Behavior / Communication Ethics / Respect Efforts
  • Communication/Marketing Plan Update for Fall 2022
  • Bonus Points Incentive for those who complete the Hunter/Landowner Supervision Course
  • Update on the Hunter Education Video/Training Sub-Committee Report

The meeting will be broadcast live on the FWP website at the address fwp.mt.gov/plpw. Public comments will be taken in person and via Zoom. To make a comment via Zoom, you must register at FWP website By noon on October 17th. For more information on the PLPW and the complete agenda, visit the FWP website fwp.mt.gov/plpw.

Hunters should carry the Waterfowl Seal with them

Waterfowl season is underway, and anglers need to make sure they have the Federal Waterfowl Seal signed with them while hunting.

The MyFWP mobile app will also list the federal stamp as something a fisherman owns, but in order for a fisherman to be legal in the field, fishermen must also carry the signed seal in their possession.

FWP may buy more real estate in Billings

Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks has released an Environmental Assessment (EA) draft to purchase more property and develop existing properties near the regional headquarters for management and public safety purposes. Public comments will be accepted on the Pemberton Lane EA project from October 7 to November 7 at 12 noon

The purpose of this project is to acquire 501 Pemberton Lane in Billings, near the FWP Region 5 headquarters at 2300 Lake Elmo Drive. At 2.4 acres, the purchase of Pemberton Lane will provide additional space to park and store equipment, vehicles, and larger trailers. Currently, there are no structures on the property. To meet the zoning and security needs of the FWP, fencing will be installed around the property, and street and sidewalk lights will be installed along Pemberton Lane. Area residents and state park users will benefit from these safety developments.

Future development of the property may include a maintenance workshop, indoor storage, expanded meeting and office space and potential housing and RV connections for seasonal employees. A separate EA will be published to address further development. This group may also provide space for Hunter and Bowhunter Education field courses. Due to its proximity to the existing FWP office buildings, the Pemberton Lane property is a convenient location for the agency’s operating needs.

EA is also proposing to install docks along Lake Elmo Drive, an offloading area for tourists arriving at Lake Elmo State Park in the headquarters parking area and street lighting above the unloading area. These developments on existing FWP properties will improve pedestrian access and safety in the state park.

Pemberton Lane EA can be found online at: https://fwp.mt.gov/binaries/content/assets/fwp/news/public-notices/2022/region-5/pemberton-ea_draft-public-comment-10_7_2022.pdf

Physical copies of an EA draft are available at the FWP office at 2300 Lake Elmo Drive in Billings or to be ordered in the mail by calling 406-247-2940.

Written comments should be sent to:

Attn: 501 Pemberton Lane Acquisition Comments

Comments can be emailed to fwpregion5pc@mt.gov; Please use the topic: Pemberton Lane Acquisition.

Telephone comments may be directed to: Mike Ruggles at 406-247-2951.

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