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Northwest Montana
Wetland Management District


Small clouds drift in an otherwise bright blue sky over a wetland.  The wetland is an oasis for waterbirds among a sea of grass.
58355 Bison Range Road
Moiese, MT   59824
E-mail: bisonrange@fws.gov
Phone Number: 406-644-2211
Visit the Refuge's Web Site:
http://bisonrange.fws.gov/wmd
All the waterfowl production areas in Northwest Montana Wetland Management District are open to hunting, wildlife observation, and photography.
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  Overview
Northwest Montana Wetland Management District
The Northwest Montana Wetland Management District (WMD) consists of waterfowl production areas (WPA) ranging in size from 28 to 2,370 acres. It is located in the Flathead and Mission valleys. The area consists of intermountain grasslands thickly dotted with wetlands. These wetland depressions were created during the 100,000-year Wisconsin glaciation, which carved stream valleys and formed the moraine and glacial outwash sections of the valley floor.

The WPAs are open to a number of public uses including wildlife observation, wildlife photography, hunting, and fishing. Smith Lake WPA is listed as a watchable wildlife site in the Montana Wildlife Viewing Guide and is considered an excellent site to view waterfowl and shorebirds.


Getting There . . .
Lake County WPAs and Conservation Easements are located south and southwest of Ronan, Montana. Flathead County WPAs are located south and west of the Kalispell area. Flathead WPA is along the north shoreline of Flathead Lake at the mouth of the Flathead River. Batavia and Smith Lake WPAs are located in Smith Valley westsouthwest of Kalispell. Blasdel WPA is located 1½ miles north of Flathead Lake. McGregor Meadows WPA is located 28 miles west of Kalispell.


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Wildlife and Habitat

Wetland habitats found on WPAs support abundant waterfowl populations, including such species as the mallard, redhead, northern pintail, American wigeon, northern shoveler, blue and green-winged teal, and Canada goose.

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History
Northwest Montana WMD was established in 1970. The District consists of 14 WPAs and some conservation easements. The Blasdel Barn on Blasdel WPA in Flathead County was built in 1909 and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1999.

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    Recreation and Education Opportunities
Environmental Education
Fishing
Hunting
Photography
Wildlife Observation
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Management Activities
Upland habitat is managed for ground nesting migratory birds. Grassland habitat consists of introduced grasses and dense nesting cover. Some areas are maintained in wheat and grain as food plots for migratory waterfowl. An extensive invasive plant control program is conducted to maintain desirable vegetation species. The Lake County units are managed by National Bison Range staff, and units in Flathead County are managed by staff stationed at Lost Trail National Wildlife Refuge.