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Fishing closure on Jefferson River to be lifted Wednesday

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TWIN BRIDGES — A fishing closure on the Jefferson River will no longer be in effect starting Wednesday, Sept. 21.

The entire Jefferson River has seen fishing restrictions since July due to warm water temperatures and low flows. Temperatures have dropped, and flows on the Jefferson will have reached management criteria for lifting the closure by Wednesday.

Fishing restrictions, such as hoot owl restrictions and full closures, are designed to protect fish that become more susceptible to disease and mortality when conditions, such as low flows and high water temperatures, combine with other stressors, including catch-and-release fishing. Fishing restrictions are also still in place for the Beaverhead and Big Hole rivers. Anglers can find a statewide list of current restrictions at fwp.mt.gov/news/current-closures-restrictions.

<p>At least 14 male sperm whales have been found beached on King Island off the north-west coast of Tasmania. </p><p>The whales are thought to all be juvenile males and from what is called a "bachelor pod'' - a pod of young males that band together after leaving their family groups.</p><p>Images and videos taken by locals show them lying on their sides near the waterline, in a state of decomposition.</p><p>The whales were found by locals and reported to the authorities on Monday afternoon. </p><p>A Marine Conservation Programme team has been sent to perform post-mortems and determine the cause of death. </p><p>Aerial surveys will be conducted to determine if there are more carcasses.</p><p>Sarah Baldock, a local to King Island was told about the beached whales by a friend:</p><p>"A friend stopped in home late yesterday afternoon and had let us know.</p><p>"We decided to take the children for a look, as sad as it is it's nice that kids get to understand the size of some of the ocean's creatures.</p><p>"The police and parks and wildlife were already there when we arrived at around 5pm."</p><p>Tasmania, the region containing King Island is considered by experts to be a hotspot for beached whales.</p><p>The complex coastal topography of the area has been blamed for the frequency of whale strandings, which have been tied to mis-navigation.</p><p>The biggest whale stranding in the areas history happened on mainland Tasmania, in 2020, leaving 380 pilot whales washed up on the beach. </p><p>The carcasses will likely be left where they were found, as the rocky coast makes machinery difficult to bring to the area.</p>

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