In lethally removing wild bison, the Montana Department of Livestock is not following adaptive management.
- “However, in 2015, DOL personnel conducted two lethal removals of bison. . . Though these bison were outside of the IBMP management zones, documentation of these incidents did not establish that the bison poses an imminent threat of coming into contact with livestock that necessitated lethal removal of the bison, nor were there initial attempts to haze the bison from the conflict area. The IBMP Adaptive Management Plan specifies that bison in conflict areas are initially to be hazed from the area. DOL lethally removed bison that may not have represented a brucellosis threat, and operational documentation did not provide a clear rationale as to why lethal removal was necessary in these cases.” (31)
- “Neither DOL management nor the associated documentation made it clear why the IBMP adaptive management guidelines were not followed in these particular cases.” (31)
- The legislative audit recommended the Department of Livestock follow the “Interagency Bison Management Plan adaptive management guidelines when lethally removing bison” and clearly document the need for lethal removals. (S-1, S-2)