An extended comment period and a public tour of the project have been announced by Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks on the Calf Creek Wildlife Management area east of Hamilton.

The FWP plan is to thin some trees in a one-thousand acre area of the Wildlife Management Area at the foothills of the Sapphire Mountains. The work would promote more native grass and shrubs, along with some aspen trees. The goals are to make the area more attractive to elk and deer in the Bitterroot Valley and it would reduce possible forest fire damage. The draft Environmental Assessment is on the FWP website.

The new comment period is April 15 to April 30. The on-site tour for the project area will be Friday, April 16, at 10 a.m. The walking tour will leave from the Calf Creek parking lot and bikes, horses or dogs are not allowed. A forester and a local wildlife biologist will talk about the vegetative treatments and answer questions. Social distancing and face masks are encouraged. Vivaca Crowser of FWP reported that portions of the Calf Creek area will open for the season April 15, which will allow the project tour the next day. Public entry to the Calf Creek WMA is only allowed during the morning hours between April 15 and May 15, when the general season begins.

The April 16th tour is limited to 15 people, so if you're interested, call Rebecca Mowry at 406 363-7141 and leave a message.

Comments on the draft environmental assessment are being accepted April 15 to April 30 by emailing shrose@mt.gov or mailing the comment to Region 2 FWP, Attn: Calf Creek Forest EA, 3201 Spurgin Road, Missoula MT 59804.

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