The enclosed decision notice is for purchase of a public road easement on approximately 1 mile of the road that crosses property owned by the Prickly Pear Land Trust to access adjacent United States Forest Service (USFS) lands. The USFS lands are part of the Helena National Forest. The proposed easement will provide legal public road access in perpetuity through private lands to the USFS lands in the Big Belt Mountains of central Montana. The cost of the easement is approximately $50,000 funded by hunting license revenues through the Access Public Lands program administered by MFWP. (Decision Notices - 08/14/2014)
Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks is seeking public comment period on fishing contests proposed for the winter season of 2014-2015. Participants must comply with state fishing regulations, including daily and possession limits. Most contests require catch-and-release fishing and participants in these contests may not keep any fish. Applications for contests may be approved, denied, or approved with conditions. Conditions placed on contests may help to minimize fish mortality, regulate harvest, reduce user conflicts, or require additional access site maintenance when needed. Please submit comments by midnight on September 12, 2014.
(Fishing - 08/12/2014)
Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks (FWP), Region One, has completed an environmental assessment (EA) for proposed improvements at the Island Lake Fishing Access Site. Island Lake is located in Lincoln County (T29N, R26W, NW¼ S31). Improvements would include: an improved gravel access road, a designated parking area to accommodate six to eight vehicles with trailers, gravel boat ramp, four designated campsites, a concrete vault latrine, fencing, fire rings, and informational and directional signs. Camping would be allowed at the FAS in the designated sites only. A nightly camping fee of $7 would be charged as per the FAS Biennial Fee Rule that was adopted by the FWP Commission in 2013.
The draft was out for a 30-day public review through May 11, 2014, with 13 written comments received. The comments and FWP responses are included in the attached decision notice. Based on the analysis in the EA and comments received, FWP proposes to develop Island Lake FAS as set forth in the decision notice.
(Decision Notices - 08/12/2014)
The Montana Fish & Wildlife Commission is seeking comment on proposed 2015 fishing regulations. The proposed regulations for March 2015 through February 2016 would retain most of the current regulations with three changes being proposed for the Western and Central fishing districts.
• Lake Mary Ronan—No bag limit on northern pike to protect the kokanee fishery and help suppress this illegally introduced fish.
• Missouri River (Toston Dam to Canyon Ferry Reservoir)—Raise the bag limit for walleye to 12 fish in order to standardize the bag limits between this Missouri River section and Canyon Ferry Reservoir.
• Holter Reservoir—Raise the bag limit for perch to allow greater harvest of a strong year- class moving through the population.
The proposed changes are available for review and comment on the FWP website at fwp.mt.gov click on Public Notice.
Comments must be received by midnight, September 12, 2014. The Fish & Wildlife Commission will take final action on the regulations in October. (Fishing - 08/11/2014)
Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP) proposes to exchange approximately 35.9 acres of the Marias River Wildlife Management Area (MRWMA) to the Marias River Bird Preserve (Preserve), LLC, who is the adjacent landowner on the southwest boundary of the WMA, for 1) approximately 76.7 acres the Preserve owns along that boundary, 2) extend an existing access agreement to FWP, and 3) grant administrative access across their property to the southern portion of the WMA via that existing access agreement. No monetary exchange would occur as part of this proposal. Locally, the project area is known as Willow Rounds. The proposed exchange would address the current access challenges both landowners have because their lands are not contiguous. (Acquisitions, Trades & Leases - 08/05/2014)