Brett French reports: Yellowstone River stays closed to waterfowl hunting
By angelamontana

Posted: April 18, 2024

The Montana Fish and Wildlife Commission voted unanimously on Wednesday to keep an 87-mile stretch of the Yellowstone River closed to waterfowl hunting. The section of river, from the mouth of the Bighorn River to the Rosebud-Custer county line, was closed 66 years ago when goose and duck populations were low. Since then, field hunting for geese along the river has become a popular activity. When Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks first proposed lifting the regulation last summer, little notice was taken. A poll by the department, with a low return rate, also showed few were opposed and supported increased access. That changed this spring when the proposal was advertised on the commission’s agenda. Public opposition quickly built arguing that although the closure may no longer be needed to help conserve the species, it is popular among hunters and landowners in the area. That prompted a proposed amendment by Commissioner Brian Cebull to keep the closure in place. To learn more, check out my story at

Written by Brett French | Outdoors Editor for Billings Gazette
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