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Mon May 22, 2006
Bison Deaths Draw Fire From Montana Governor
Yellowstone, WY – More Yellowstone National Park bison died
this winter and spring due to state and federal authorities, than in any of the past nine years.
The increase is renewing attention to how the park's wandering bison are dealt with.
It's also prompting calls -- most notably from Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer -- for changes to the current management plan.
Officials captured and sent nearly 900 bison to slaughter under the state-federal plan. It's aimed at reducing the potential spread
of brucellosis from bison to cattle.
At least 12 other bison died as a result of other management actions dating back to January.
That's the most killed since the winter of 1996-97.
Schweitzer plans to meet with state and federal officials soon to discuss potential management options. They include greater tolerance of bison in Montana and the buy-out of grazing rights on lands near the park where cattle are run.