Big Sky Roundup

Members selected for elk management advisory group

By: - March 15, 2022 5:24 pm

(Photo courtesy of Pixabay | Public domain).

After reviewing 243 applications, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks has selected 12 individuals to serve on a citizens advisory group to address the future of elk management, FWP said Tuesday in a news release. The department said the 12-member group will help craft a new future for elk management and elk hunting in Montana.

FWP identified them as the following: Ian Wargo, Heath Hansen, Brent Race, Stephanie Prater, Scott Tinklenberg, Matt Wickens, Race King, Chuck Rein, Druska Kinkie, Staci Ketchum, Scott Van Dyken, and Aaron Iverson.

“This group represents a broad range of viewpoints and experience and will use that diversity to focus on two broad tasks – developing a set of recommendations to address elk management issues and improving relationships between stakeholders,” the agency said. “The members were selected for the diversity of viewpoints they represent and their expressed eagerness to make progress on the complex challenges facing elk management in Montana. The members were selected irrespective of group affiliation.”

FWP Director Hank Worsech said he was grateful to the people who applied.

“I was blown away by the interest in this effort,” Worsech said in a statement from the agency. “The quality of applicants was tremendous. With so many groups interested in helping out, the fairest way to select members was to focus on the experience each applicant had and their willingness to work with others to find a solution. The work I’m asking this group to take on will be tough, but I’m convinced lasting solutions will come with folks like these working together.”

The first meeting, which will be held virtually and streamed online, is scheduled for the afternoon of March 22. FWP said the group’s recommendations will be presented to Worsech by July 31.

FWP also said applicants who weren’t selected for the advisory group will serve as “a sounding board,” and this board will be invited to attend every meeting and will review and provide input on the advisory group’s work.

For more information about the advisory group and sounding board and to watch the March 22 meeting, go to https://fwp.mt.gov/aboutfwp/elk-management-citizen-advisory-group.

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