MSGA & MPLC recently submitted comments on the Montana Forest Action Plan, emphasizing that livestock grazing is an integral competent to successful forest management, forest health and decreased fire risk.
The comments are in response to recommendations made by the Montana Forest Action Advisory Council to address forest health and wildfire risk issues across the state of Montana. According to the council, included within the plan are recommended goals and strategies to achieve cross-boundary forest restoration and management.
MSGA member Steve Hedstrom of Raynesford represents ranching interests on the council.
In the comments, MSGA Director of Natural Resources Raylee Honeycutt asked that the council give public lands grazing permitees larger consideration as “important and necessary stakeholders.”
Other highlights of MSGA’s comments included:
- Recognizing livestock grazing as a tool to mitigate wildfire risk.
- Utilizing forest thinning and timber production to minimize conifer encroachment.
- Addressing noxious weeds and invasive species.
- Striking a balance between allowable AUMs and wildlife use of range resources.
- Fostering collaborative efforts between permittees and public lands recreationists, and helping reduce the costs for permittees.
MSGA will continue to closely monitor the plan development to ensure livestock interests are part of the discussion.
View the comments in their entirety here.
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