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Education & Outreach


Ferruginous Hawk

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks is reaching out to the public to generate support and action for bird conservation in Montana. The birding community generates $82 billion dollars per year in output to our national economy. In Montana, 40% of all residents are birders, meaning we travel to watch birds for recreation or maintain bird feeders in our yards. Clearly, Montana's citizens support the intrinsic value of birds in our landscapes.

Over 300 species of birds regularly occur in Montana. Of these, approximately 27% are Species of Concern or species considered to be at risk because of declining populations, threats to habitats, or restricted distributions. Conversion, fragmentation, and degradation of native ecological systems are the most significant causes of declining bird populations. Other factors related to human growth (e.g., feral cats) are exacerbating declines.

Jean Smith Estate

Thanks to the Jean Smith Estate (Jean was an ornithology professor at Carrol College for many years) a generous do natation was made to FWP for the purpose of bird conservation/education. This donation provided the emphasis and funding to produce Birding Trunks . These trunks are scattered around Montana at FWP locations and can be checked out by educator’s to teach youth and adults about birds. Each trunk contains up to 20 binoculars and classroom materials for teaching students about birds.