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Outdoors briefs

| April 26, 2024 7:00 AM

FWP to review trapping seasons at annual meeting in Kalispell

Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks staff will present harvest information from the recent trapping seasons in northwest Montana at a joint meeting of the Montana Trappers Association and Montana Fur Harvesters on Sunday, April 28 in Kalispell.

The annual meeting starts at 1:30 p.m. at the FWP office in Kalispell, 490 N. Meridian.

FWP staff will talk with trappers about the recently closed seasons. Discussions could also include season quotas and regulations in northwest Montana.

For more information, contact Jessy Coltrane at 406-751-4584.

Spring birding program set for April 27 in Libby

Spring birding basics for beginners will be presented by local biologist Brian Baxter at 9 a.m. Mountain Time Saturday, April 27 in the Fireside Room at the Venture Inn in Libby.

After an introduction for the beginning birder to identify features, behaviors, flight patterns, habitats and migratory movements of raptors, waterfowl, woodpeckers, shorebirds and songbirds of our area, everyone will head to the field about 10 a.m. to visit several types of habitats to observe and identify regional birdlife. 

There wlll be a road tour and short walks. It is for adults only, no children or pets. Come prepared properly for a field day with full gas tanks, proper layers, binoculars, bird guide books, water, lunch, and a good sense of humor! 

To register, email b_baxter53@yahoo.com or call 406-291-2154. 

State to host local meetings on proposed conservation easement

Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks is seeking public input on a potential project that would place nearly 33,000 acres of private timberland in northwest Montana under a conservation easement and protect working lands, public recreation access, and wildlife habitat.

FWP is hosting a pair of public meetings to explain the proposed project and answer questions from the public. 

- April 30 - FWP Region 1 Office, 490 N. Meridian, Kalispell, 6 p.m.

- May 1 - Libby City Hall - Ponderosa Room, 952 E. Spruce, 6 p.m.

The deadline to comment on this proposal is May 15. To comment and learn more, visit https://fwp.mt.gov/news/public-notices.

FWP published a draft environmental assessment that outlines the proposed first phase of the project named the Montana Great Outdoors Conservation Easement. This is the first of a potential two-phased project totaling 85,792 acres of private timberland and fish and wildlife habitat owned by Green Diamond Resource Company.

The first phase includes forestlands in the Salish and Cabinet mountains between Kalispell and Libby. The private property provides abundant public hunting and angling opportunities that would be permanently secured under this proposal. This project would conserve wildlife winter range and a movement corridor for elk, mule deer, white-tailed deer, and moose. It would provide critical habitat for grizzly bear and Canada lynx, federally threatened species found on the property, and protect streams for the westslope cutthroat trout and Columbia River redband trout, both Montana Species of Concern.

If the project were approved, Green Diamond would maintain ownership of the land under an easement owned by FWP. The easement would allow Green Diamond to sustainably harvest wood products from these timberlands, preclude development, protect important wildlife habitat and associated key landscape connectivity, and provide permanent free public access to the easement lands.

FWP seeking campground hosts at northwest Montana state parks

KALISPELL — Montana FWP is seeking volunteer campground hosts at several state parks in northwest Montana.

Campground hosts are provided a free campsite and help with daily operations at the state parks.

Volunteer positions may include benefits such as training and orientation, Workers' Compensation insurance, reimbursement for travel and meals (up to $100 per month, or to the extent funds are available), volunteer uniform, college credit or other special provisions unique to the site. 

- Wayfarers Unit of Flathead Lake State Park – Contact Derrick Rathe, (406) 837-3041 ext. 2

- Somers Beach State Park – Contact Tony Powell, 406-751-5423

- Whitefish Lake State Park (2) – Contact Dave Bennetts, 406-751-4590

- Logan State Park - Contact Dave Bennetts, 406-751-4590

Learn more: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMI-2jk8ajo