Montana Elk Management Survey

Elk management is one of the most contentious issues in Montana. Farmers, ranchers, and other private landowners have concerns about crop and fence damage, and about the potential for disease transmission to livestock.  Hunters have concerns with a loss of elk on public lands and ultimately less hunting opportunity. While some hunting units are over objective, many hunters also report problems getting to elk and having the opportunity to hunt them.

FWP has tried to find solutions that balance different stakeholder interests, but there is more that needs to be done.  In order to inform ongoing management deliberations, the Montana Wildlife Federation is seeking input from Montana hunters.

Support a Lead-Free Montana 

MWF knows that hunters care about wildlife like no one else and they have shown a willingness to do the right thing in defense of wildlife. In Montana, we are seeing too many occurrences of our wildlife becoming critically ill due to lead poisoning, contracted from consuming lead left in gut piles. While this is an unintentional repercussion of hunting with lead ammunition, the impact can be mitigated when hunters switch to leadfree alternatives. We are asking you to join us in our LeadFree MT initiative by taking the MWF Non-Lead Pledge. By taking the MWF Non-Lead Pledge you agree to help wildlife and your fellow Montanans by:
  • Only use leadfree ammunition, such as steel or copper, when hunting.

  • Where possible, practice at established ranges so lead on the landscape is confined to specific, manageable areas.

  • Help to educate others on the benefits of hunting with leadfree ammunition by sharing your knowledge and experience.

While these steps may seem simple, the positive effects they will have can not be understated. It is our role to stand up for the wildlife that can’t stand up for itself. Stand up for Montana’s wildlife today by taking the MWF Non-Lead Pledge HERE. Together we can support our wildlife and each other by creating a leadfree Montana.

It’s Time to Fully Fund LWCF

The Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) is known as one of the most successful conservation tools in the United States. Funding new parks and trails, protecting wildlife habitat and increasing access to public lands, it’s easy to see why LWCF enjoys such bipartisan support.

Since the creation of LWCF, Congress has siphoned billions of dollars from the fund to other uses, leaving conservation projects unfunded. That’s why we need to work now to ensure the future of LWCF by getting it the full and dedicated funding that the people of Montana deserve.

Currently, there are two bills, s.1081 and H.R. 3195, that would provide full and dedicated funding to LWCF. Congress understands how important this fund is to hunters, anglers and all outdoor recreationists and we applaud Senators Jon Tester and Steve Daines on being co-sponsors of the Senate bill that would ensure LWCF’s future.

Take action NOW to send a message to Congressman Greg Gianforte telling him to co-sponsor H.R. 3195 to protect Montana’s hunting and fishing heritage.

Protect the Blackfoot River for Future Generations 

The Blackfoot River and surrounding landscape are cherished by Montanans and visitors from around the world. It’s a landscape that provides for almost every form of recreation, from snowmobiling to fly fishing, and provides some of the most quality fish and wildlife habitat in Montana. Whether you hunt, hike, bike, or birdwatch, all Montanans recognize the importance of landscapes like the Blackfoot to Montana’s heritage.

The Blackfoot Clearwater Stewardship Act, introduced by Senator Jon Tester, is an opportunity to preserve this landscape well into the future. For over a decade, this proposal has resulted in 140 jobs, thousands of miles of trails restored, and millions of dollars invested in the local community.

Montana’s congressional delegation has the ability to pass this legislation to protect Montana’s heritage. Send a message to our elected officials today in support of the Blackfoot Clearwater Stewardship Act.

Stand for the Badger-Two Medicine

Last Thursday, United States Senator Jon Tester introduced a Senate resolution reemphasizing the importance of protecting the Badger-Two Medicine. Senator Tester has long supported the Blackfeet people and Montana hunters and anglers in the fight to permanently protect the last unprotected piece of the Rocky Mountain Front. MWF and our collaborative partners thank Senator Tester for his support.

MWF is asking our other Montana congressional delegates, Senator Daines and Congressman Gianforte, to also support this resolution.  Please take a moment to contact Senator Daines and Congressman Gianforte and ask them to stand with Senator Tester in defense of the Badger. At the same time, you can join MWF thanking Senator Tester for his support.

Recovering America’s Wildlife Act

The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act has Republican and Democratic cosponsors from all over the country. This bipartisan support is a testament to how much benefit preventive conservation can have for wildlife and our economy.

The bipartisan Recovering America’s Wildlife Act will redirect roughly $1.3 billion each year to state fish and wildlife agencies to conserve at-risk species and habitat, manage human-wildlife conflicts, boost conservation education, and add public outdoor recreation opportunities.


Contain the Spread of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Pledge

Now once again we are asking conservationist hunters to get into the fight against CWD. Hunters need to be extra careful in handling game animals to prevent further spread of the disease. That includes leaving the spine and head of animals killed in the special “CWD Management Zones” in Montana onsite or disposing of them in a landfill within the zone. It also means never disposing of any deer, elk or moose carcasses out in the woods. And we’re asking all hunters to report any incidences of animals that appear to be weakened, disoriented or otherwise showing signs of this degenerative brain disease.