Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks finalized three significant conservation easements in the Habitat Montana program that will protect more than 18,000 acres and provide 970 hunter days a year.
“I’m pleased we are able to expand public access and the hunting and recreational opportunities these lands provide,” said FWP Director Martha Williams. “We’re also ensuring that we can keep working families on their land, while conserving wildlife habitat, and preserving Montana’s outdoor traditions for future generations.”
All three easements focused on protecting high-valued wildlife habitat and providing public access – key components of FWP’s Habitat Montana program.
The Birdtail Conservation Easement, White Deer Meadows Conservation Easement, and North Sunday Creek Conservation Easement all faced year-end deadlines, but they all closed prior to the new year.
The White Deer Meadows Conservation Easement north of Bozeman in the Bridger Foothills will protect 405 acres of critical deer winter range and open up 170 hunter-days per year.
The North Sunday Creek Conservation Easement in Custer and Rosebud counties will protect 14,301 acres of sagebrush and grasslands important for sage-grouse, mule deer and pronghorn. The easement also opens up 400 hunter-days per year.
The Birdtail Conservation Easement in Cascade County will protect 3,980 acres of year-round foothill habitat for elk, mule deer and native gamebirds as well as guaranteeing access to 400 hunter-days per year.