Scoping Notice for the Whitefish Lake Watershed Project
By Moosetrack Megan


Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks (FWP) is working with The Trust for Public Land (TPL) to conserve twenty-one sections (approximately 13,398 acres) of Weyerhaeuser property located northwest of Whitefish, Montana, that we refer to as the Whitefish Lake Watershed Project. The proposal entails TPL purchasing the entire property from Weyerhaeuser. The Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) would provide funding for the purchase of five of the sections (approx. 3,180 acres) and would retain a perpetual conservation easement on the land to conserve important native fish habitat within the Swift Creek watershed. FWP is proposing to purchase a perpetual conservation easement (CE) from TPL on the remaining sixteen sections (approx. 10,218 acres) of land using a variety of funding sources. The purpose of the FWP-held easement would be to protect critical wildlife habitat in perpetuity, continue sustainable commercial forest management, and prevent development of the property. Public recreational access would continue under the terms of the proposed conservation easement in a manner similar to current allowed uses.

Through the Scoping Notice, FWP is seeking initial public input on the proposed purchase of a conservation easement on sixteen sections and requests the public’s help in identifying any issues, concerns, or other information that FWP should consider when evaluating this conservation opportunity.

FWP asks that comments on this proposal be submitted to either of the following addresses by June 7, 2017:

                        Kris Tempel                                         or         ktempel@mt.gov

                        Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks

                        490 North Meridian Road

                        Kalispell, MT 59901

If you have any questions regarding this project or the Scoping Notice, please contact Alan Wood (awood@mt.gov; 406-751-4595).






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