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Department of Environmental Quality and Department of Justice, Natural Resource Damage Program requested 1 3/4 miles of the Clark Fork River, ten acres of the Warm Springs Wildlife Management Area, and a road in the wildlife management area be closed to public occupation due to Superfund cleanup construction activities. The Superfund cleanup activities require heavy equipment with large loads in an area of recreational use. The closure is necessary so construction crews can safely operate and maneuver without potential collisions with recreationists on the river or on the land. The closure is also necessary so recreationists, including those with limited maneuverability, are not subject to potential collision with large equipment or loads being carried by heavy equipment.
(ARM Rules - 03/29/2013)

In a draft environmental assessment (EA) dated August 9, 2012, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks (MFWP) proposed removing an illegal introduction of northern pike from Bass Lake and Mud Creek in northwest Montana by applying a commercial formulation of rotenone (a pesticide poisonous to fish) to the lake and nearby stream system, and then restocking the lake with westslope cutthroat trout. The draft EA was out for public review through October 9, 2012, and a public meeting with landowners was held on December 12, 2012, in Eureka. Based on the comments received during the public comment period and at the public meeting, MFWP acknowledges the public’s concerns, and it is recommended that MFWP does not implement plans to chemically remove northern pike from Mud Creek and Bass Lake at this time. Instead, over the next two years FWP will involve the landowners in exploring alternative means of suppression including use of electrofishing, nets, and traps. FWP will also work with interested parties to understand how rotenone functions in the environment. At the end of two years FWP will analyze the information and develop a long-term management plan for Bass Lake, conducting additional environmental assessment if necessary. No changes were made to the draft EA; therefore, the draft together with the decision notice will become the final document. Contact person: Fisheries Biologist Jim Dunnigan, (406) 293-4161, Ext. 200, or e-mail to jdunnigan@mt.gov.
(Decision Notices - 03/29/2013)

Fish, Wildlife & Parks (FWP), Region One, has completed the environmental assessment (EA) process for the Deep Creek Diversion Fish Screen Project. The purpose of the project is to eliminate fish entrainment on Deep Creek by installing an effective fish screen on an existing irrigation diversion. The installation of the fish screen on the Deep Creek diversion would occur in late summer or fall of 2013. The project site is located approximately 3 miles northeast of the city of Fortine (T35N, R25W, S20) in Lincoln County, Montana. The draft was out for a 30-day public review through March 13, 2013. Based on the comments received, and due to the urgent need to reduce native salmonid entrainment and mortality associated with the inadequately screened irrigation diversion, it is recommended that the proposed project be implemented as soon as possible. No changes were made to the draft EA; therefore, the draft together with the decision notice will become the final document. Contact person: Fisheries Biologist Jim Dunnigan, (406) 293-4161, Ext. 200, or e-mail to jdunnigan@mt.gov.
(Decision Notices - 03/26/2013)

A Decision Notice has been prepared to maintain a coordinated rest-rotation grazing program on Fleecer Wildlife Management Area (WMA) near Divide, MT, for a 6-year term to extend April 2013 through October 2018. The program, which began in 1982 and has been in effect in its current format since 1987, consists of a spring grazing and fall grazing exchange agreement with two area ranches.
(Decision Notices - 03/26/2013)

Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks (MFWP) Region 6 has issued a Decision Notice for the Fresno Reservoir Wildlife Management Area Grazing Lease Extension. Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP) is proposing to extend the grazing lease on the Fresno Reservoir Wildlife Management Area (WMA) for two years ending September 15th, 2014. Grazing would continue to be managed under the current rest-rotation grazing system. During this extension, a new management plan for this WMA will be developed evaluating habitat conditions, role of livestock grazing, and management priorities for this area. The Fresno Reservoir WMA is located in western Hill County approximately 23 miles northwest of the city of Havre. It is northwest of Fresno Reservoir along the western edge of the Milk River. Extension of this grazing lease for another two years under the current system would not result in any foreseeable significant impacts to the vegetation or wildlife on the WMA, nor would it have any foreseeable significant individual or cumulative impacts on the physical or human environment. After review of this proposal and the public comments submitted it is our decision to accept the Decision Notice and Draft Environmental Assessment as final and to recommend the extension of the grazing lease on the Fresno Reservoir WMA.
(Decision Notices - 03/26/2013)



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