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The Montana Conservationist September 20

Greetings readers! September is a bountiful season, and we’re not short on conservation news this week. So take a break from your harvesting, hunting, gathering, and canning projects and give this week’s TMC a read:

  • Lincoln CD has begun an awesome project restoring a stretch of the Tobacco River after years of degradation from the railroad, logging, and gravel mining. Becky Lihme checks in with photos and updates from Phase 1 of the restoration.
  • One of the big hangups in the Farm Bill negotiations has been the Conservation Reserve Program, which the Star Tribune reports is gaining support from farmers as commodity prices fall.
  • A recent analysis of fish tissue samples in Lake Koocanusa shows no significant increase of selenium concentrations over the past five years, which is welcome news for stakeholders.
  • September’s Montana Range Tour stopped at the Pat and Mike Wilson ranch in Roosevelt County. The Williston Herald tagged along, and reports on the effects that the oil boom has had on the ranch.
  • In an article in On Pasture, NRCS asks whether cover crops and rotational grazing can extend the grazing season. Spoiler alert: the answer is yes, probably maybe.
  • The largest oilseed processing plant, storage and refinery facilities in Montana will be completed soon, and that means there will probably be more canola and other oil seed crops grown in the state as producers take advantage of the easily accessed processing plant.
  • NACD highlighted an article about Nebraska’s Shell Creek watershed, and how a WRP spurred historic restoration. Here in Montana, we have a number of districts and watershed groups taking similar action thanks to SWCDM’s WRP program.
  • In Wyoming, a judge recently rejected renewal of an elk feeding ground permit on federal land, citing potential for Chronic Wasting Disease. And for anyone that recently sent a kid back to school, you understand perfectly how congregating lots of people or animals together can spread disease. (PSA: please remind your sixth grader that sneezing contests are NOT COOL).

All of that, plus jobs! and great Conservation District events! Read this week’s edition: TMC 2018-09-20

Kate Arpin

Kate is the Communications and Technology Manager for Soil & Water Conservation Districts of Montana. She manages the website, puts out The Montana Conservationist every other week, and assists conservation districts with technology, websites, and communications.

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