Parasitic Disease Causes Yellowstone River Closure

SBB_0831-558x372In response to a parasitic disease that caused an unprecedented fish kill, on August 19, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP) closed 183 miles of the Yellowstone River and all its tributaries.

The closure stretches from Yellowstone National Park’s North Boundary to Laurel, Montana. “This action is necessary to protect the fishery and the economy it sustain,” said Montana FWP in a press release. “The closure will also help limit the spread of the parasite to adjacent rivers through boats, tubes, waders and other human contact and minimize further mortality in all fish species.

“In the past week, FWP has documented over 2,000 dead Mountain Whitefish on some affected stretches of the Yellowstone. With that, FWP estimates the total impact to Mountain Whitefish in the Yellowstone to be in the tens of thousands. FWP has also recently received reports of the kill beginning to affect some Rainbow and Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout.”

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