I’ve been researching an article for explorebigsky.com about a new agreement that will create a 75,000-acre “Bison Conservation Area” in Gardiner Basin, just north of Yellowstone Park. Also, I made this silly 18 second video of roadside Yellowstone bison last summer.
Supporters of the plan say it would help Montana manage the animals, which often leave the Yellowstone Park to winter on lower feeding grounds. Bison hunting would increase on the land outside the Park, and animals that migrate north into Paradise Valley will still be shot.
Over the past 20 years, 3,800 bison were slaughtered after leaving the national park. Their presence outside Yellowstone theoretically endangered livestock with brucellosis, a disease also carried by elk and cattle that causes pregnant females to abort their young.
This winter, 600+ bison were captured just outside the Park. 40 percent of them tested positive for brucellosis. Those animals are still being held in pens, and officials say they are not sure whether those animals will be shipped to slaughter. Governor Schwietzer’s 90-day ban on shipments/slaughter will be up May 15.
The IBMP partners include the National Park Service, the U.S. Forest Service, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, the Montana Department of Livestock, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, the InterTribal Buffalo Council, the Confederated Salish Kootenai Tribes, and the Nez Perce Tribe.
Read the entire article here: explorebigsky.com/newspost/new-agreement-creates-75000-acre-bison-conservation-area