FWP seeks public comment on proposed land purchase near Anaconda
By angelamontana

Posted: April 1, 2019

(Bozeman, MT) — Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks is seeking public comment on a proposal to purchase in fee title a 160-acre parcel of private land adjacent to Mt. Haggin Wildlife Management Area. It is located about 10 miles south of Anaconda along Montana Highway 569, also known as the Mill Creek Highway.

The property is owned by the Edna Schmeller Living Trust. The value of the property has been appraised at $464,000. FWP would pay the appraised value using funds from Habitat Montana and possibly other partners, including a contribution from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.

Upon purchase, this property would be incorporated into and managed as part of the Mt. Haggin WMA. The property is part of the migration pathway for mule deer and elk, and it provides year-round habitat for moose, beaver, black bear, ruffed grouse and a host of other wildlife. The proposed acquisition would also support native fish restoration projects planned in the drainage and would provide additional public access for hunting, angling and other recreational opportunities. The property would be managed to sustain these values.

The property addition would not be incorporated into any existing grazing leases on the WMA. From Dec. 2 to May 15, motorized travel on the parcel would be restricted to snow machines only, consistent with management on the adjacent portion of the WMA.

A public meeting to discuss the project will be held Wednesday, April 3, from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Butte Area Resource Office, 1820 Meadowlark Lane, in Butte. Public comments will be accepted from March 28 until 5 p.m. on April 27. Comments may be submitted in several ways:

  • At the April 3 meeting.
  • Online at fwp.mt.gov. The draft environmental assessment and form for public comments will be available under “News”, then “Recent Public Notices” on FWP’s website.
  • Emailed to vboccadori@mt.gov. Please put “EA Comment” in the subject line.
  • Mailed to FWP’s office in Butte, 1820 Meadowlark Lane, Butte, MT 59701, Attn: Mt. Haggin WMA Addition.

If you have questions on the proposed purchase, please contact FWP’s Butte Area Wildlife Biologist Vanna Boccadori at 406-494-2082 or vboccadori@mt.gov.

(via MT FWP)