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Success Stories -Central Montana

Big Spring Creek (Fergus County)

Brewery Flats Brewery Flats

Channel restoration at the Brewery Flats Fishing Access Site, located on Big Spring Creek near Lewistown. The left photo shows the restoration project during construction with the old, channelized stream reach (located on the left side of photo) and the newly constructed meandering channel (located on the right side of photo). The right photo shows 4,000 feet of restored channel that has significantly benefited both rainbow trout and brown trout.

Canyon Ferry Reservoir (Broadwater County)

Canyon Ferry Reservoir Canyon Ferry Reservoir

Spawning and rearing habitat enhancement, located on Canyon Ferry Reservoir near Helena. The placement of salvaged Christmas trees in strategic locations around the reservoir has provided improved spawning and rearing habitat for yellow perch, walleye, and other fish species.

Little Prickly Pear Creek (Lewis and Clark County)

Little Prickly Pear Creek

Installation of a self-cleaning fish screen located in an irrigation diversion on Little Prickly Pear Creek, a tributary to the Missouri River. Little Prickly Pear Creek supports significant spawning runs of rainbow trout and brown trout from the Missouri River. This fish screen prevents the loss of fish into the irrigation system and, at the same time, allows the waters users to obtain their water in an unimpeded manner.

Missouri River (Cascade County)

Missouri River Missouri River

Restoration of 3,200 feet of eroding river bank on the Missouri River, located near the town of Cascade. This project involved bank sloping, placement of salvaged sod, transplanting of approximately 500 willow clumps, and the installation of riparian fencing to improve habitat for resident rainbow trout and brown trout. The left photo shows the eroding riverbank before restoration. The right photo shows the riverbank after restoration.

South Fork Judith River (Judith Basin County)

South Fork Judith River South Fork Judith River

Installation of a fish barrier on the South Fork Judith River, located south of the town of Stanford. This relatively large passage barrier is protecting nearly genetically pure westslope cutthroat trout in the upper 25 miles of the drainage from non-native rainbow trout found lower in the drainage. The left photo shows the barrier during construction. The right photo shows the completed barrier.

Teton River (Teton County)

Teton River Teton River

Bank stabilization project, located on the Teton River near the town of Choteau. The project stabilized an actively eroding stream bank through sloping, re-vegetation, and rest from livestock grazing. The left photo shows a portion of the eroding stream bank before stabilization. The right photo shows the stream bank immediately following treatment. The project primarily benefits brown trout.

Wolf Creek (Lewis and Clark County)

Wolf Creek Wolf Creek

Fish passage enhancement project on Wolf Creek, a tributary to Little Prickly Pear Creek near the town of Wolf Creek. The left photo shows a diversion creating a fish migration barrier in Wolf Creek. The right photo shows the diversion following completion of fish passage enhancement project. Wolf Creek provides important spawning and rearing habitat for rainbow trout residing in the Missouri River.

Stillwater River (Stillwater County)

Stillwater River Stillwater River

Restoration of a side channel on the Stillwater River, located near the town of Absarokee. This abandoned side channel was restored to provide additional spawning and rearing habitat for rainbow trout and brown trout. The left photo shows restoration of the side channel during construction. The right photo shows the restored side channel immediately following project completion (riparian vegetation has not had time to re-establish).

Sweet Grass Creek (Sweet Grass County)

Sweet Grass Creek Sweet Grass Creek

Sweet Grass Creek, located near the town of Big Timber, before installation of riparian fencing (left photo) and after installation of riparian fencing (right photo). This project involved the installation of nearly one mile of fencing. The riparian corridor has been managed as an exclosure since the fencing was completed. The improved habitat provides benefits to rainbow trout, brown trout, and Yellowstone cutthroat trout.

Esp-Chambers Spring Creek (Sweet Grass County)

Esp-Chambers Spring Creek Esp-Chambers Spring Creek

Restoration of Esp-Chambers Spring Creek, a tributary to the Yellowstone River, located near Big Timber. The left photo shows the channel and riparian corridor before restoration (water impounded by perched culvert). The right photo shows the channel and riparian corridor after restoration. This project benefited brown trout, rainbow trout, and Yellowstone cutthroat trout.

Magpie Creek (Lewis and Clark County)

Magpie Creek Magpie Creek

Upstream fish passage enhancement located on Magpie Creek, a tributary to Canyon Ferry Reservoir. The left photo shows a perched culvert creating an upstream passage barrier to fish. The right photo shows the modified culvert providing easy upstream fish passage. This project primarily benefited rainbow trout residing in Canyon Ferry Reservoir by opening access to additional spawning and rearing habitat.