Tribes to protect, restore 6 miles of river

Pablo, Montana (AP) December 2010

The Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes have an agreement to protect a six-mile stretch of the Little Bitterroot River, upstream from its confluence with the Flathead River.

CSKT Chairman “Bud” Moran said last week that the tribe has enrolled 343 acres of streamside land on the Flathead Indian Reservation in a U.S. Department of Agriculture conservation program for the next 15 years.

The Missoulian reports the tribes will fence off at least a 180-foot buffer on each side of the river and restore vegetation.

Areas along the river lack trees and shrubs, show signs of past heavy grazing and sloughing banks that deposit sediment into the river.

The tribes will plant 5,000 native trees and shrubs along the river. Half of the cost of the restoration effort will be reimbursed.