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Local meetings in the works for elk management

by The Western News
| July 12, 2022 7:00 AM

HELENA – Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks will host a series of public meetings this summer and fall to gather ideas about local elk management issues and population objectives.

In Northwest Montana, meetings will be held in Libby, Eureka, Kalispell and Thompson Falls. Dates and times have not yet been announced yet for those meetings.

A public comment period will be open from June 20 to Oct. 15. Beginning June 20, comments can be submitted online or emailed to FWPWLD@mt.gov.

Input gathered during the local process will be used with information obtained at the statewide scale to develop a draft Elk Management Plan.

FWP began developing a revised statewide Elk Management Plan in 2020. The first step in the process was to convene a citizen’s group to develop guiding principles for revising the plan.

Kalispell resident Ian Wargo represents Northwest Montana on the citizen's group.

The next step is to gather input on current elk population objectives and other local challenges that could be addressed in the revised Elk Management Plan.

“Revising the statewide Elk Management Plan is a critical step for improving elk management to meet both hunter and landowner expectations,” said FWP Wildlife Division Deer/Elk Coordinator Lindsey Parsons. “Public input from the beginning is critical and we’re hoping hunters and landowners alike will provide comment during this scoping period.”

Once the draft Elk Management Plan has been developed and released, there will be additional public comment opportunities offered.