District Seeking Public Comments on Horsefly Vegetation Project Proposal
By Moosetrack Megan

Posted: April 16, 2018

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, MONT., April 2, 2018—Members of the public are encouraged to review the Horsefly Vegetation Project proposal and submit comments to help identify values and constraints that should be considered during further analysis of proposed management activities. Public comments should be submitted by April 26, 2018.

The Horsefly Vegetation project is located within the Miller Gulch and Newland Creek drainages in the Little Belt Mountains on the Belt Creek White Sulphur Springs Ranger District. The project proposal includes a combination of harvest, stand improvement, and prescribed burning management activities on about 13,410 acres of National Forest System lands.

Members of the public are invited to review the project proposal documents, which are posted online at:  https://www.fs.usda.gov/projects/hlcnf/landmanagement/projects; people can also join forest specialists to learn more and ask more specific questions at a public open house on Wednesday, April 18th from 4 p.m to 6:30 p.m. at the Meagher County Emergency Services Training Center (102 W. Crawford).

Due to a combination of fire suppression and more recently insect infestation of primarily mountain pine beetle and spruce budworm in the project area, forest specialists completed a landscape assessment to evaluate what management activities would help restore this ecosystem to a healthier and more resilient forest. Based on that assessment, it was clear that there was a need to improve forest health and landscape resiliency, reduce wildfire hazards, and provide wood products to local and regional economies by developing a vegetation project in the Horsefly area.

By fostering greater landscape resiliency within the project area, the District will be reducing the potential for intense wildfires as well as improving the overall forest structure and diversity, reestablishing a meadow-type ecosystem, and restoring populations of Whiebark pine and aspen.

All public comments on the propsal can be submitted one of four ways, no later than April 26, 2018:

  • Email your comment to comments-northern-lewisclark-white-sulphur-sprg@fs.fed.uswith “Horsefly Vegetation Project” in the subject line;
  • Physically mail it to: Belt Creek White Sulphur Springs Ranger District, ATTN: Horsefly Vegetation Project, 204 W. Folsom, P.O. Box A, White Sulphur Springs, MT 59645
  • Hand deliver it to: White Sulphur Springs Ranger District at 204 West Folsom in White Sulpur Springs; or
  • Submit written comments while attending the Public Open House on April 18, 2018.

For more information, contact the Belt Creek White Sulphur Springs Ranger District office at 547-3361.