The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation has granted $837,000 to Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks to combat invasive mussels in Montana.
The funds will be used to improve inspection/decontamination stations; provide campsites for inspection staff; purchase inspection and decontamination equipment, materials and supplies, outreach materials, storage sheds, and shelters; and also provide for sampling and analysis.
“Preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species like quagga and zebra mussels is a high priority for Reclamation,” said Steve Davies, Reclamation’s Montana area manager. “The state of Montana is taking a leadership role with inspection and decontamination stations throughout the state. This funding will assist them with needed resources and equipment for two ‘at risk’ reservoirs: Tiber and Canyon Ferry.”
Most of the funding will be used at Tiber Reservoir, near Chester, since it’s the only reservoir in the state to test positive for aquatic invasive mussels in 2016. A large portion of funding will be used to construct a new campground loop and inspection site near Tiber Marina to provide needed campsites for inspection staff. A portion of the funding will also be used at Canyon Ferry Reservoir, near Helena, since a suspect sample was collected there.
“We are always looking for ways to improve Montana’s aquatic invasive species inspection and monitoring programs,” said Tom Woolf, AIS Bureau Chief for FWP. “The improvements being made at Tiber will help make the inspection process better for both boaters and our inspection staff.”