Montana Department of Livestock

A map of the proposed surveillance area provided by the Montana Department of Livestock May 18, 2020.
Montana Department of Livestock


Montanans may submit public comment on a proposal to expand the Designated Surveillance Area for brucellosis in the southwest part of the state. If approved, the DSA would expand to include the area between Dillon, Twin Bridges and Alder.

A cow looks up on a farm near Bridger, Montana.
Kayla Desroches / Yellowstone Public Radio

While economists warn of potential meat shortages in grocery stores this month, livestock producers are struggling to find ways of getting their animals to market for a fair price. Many ranchers in Montana are seeking out more local options and hoping for reforms in the industry. Yellowstone Public Radio’s Rachel Cramer shared her reporting with Nicky Ouellet.

A bull elk searches for food beneath the snow in Yellowstone National Park in February 2020.
Jacob W. Frank/YNP (Public Domain)

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks announced Monday that an elk herd in the Bangtail Mountains has tested negative for brucellosis. State wildlife managers recently completed the two-year project aimed at understanding the risk and spread of the disease in wildlife and livestock.

Elk standing in a field.
Walt Morgan / Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Several elk in southwestern Montana’s Ruby Mountains have been exposed to brucellosis. State officials say it’s the first time the disease has reached elk in the area.

Mule deer
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service / U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Officials say Montana hunters will be able to submit meat for chronic wasting disease testing within the state by the next hunting season.

The Montana Department of Livestock says a brucellosis-infected cow from a Madison County ranch was identified during a voluntary whole-herd test. The animal was euthanized, and the infection confirmed at the National Veterinary Services Laboratories in Iowa. The cow tested negative last year.

A feral hog sow with sixteen piglets
AgriLife Today / Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)


Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly named Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks as the lead agency regarding feral swine. The Montana Department of Livestock is leading the prevention effort.  

Feral swine been in the news a lot lately. While they make for an entertaining headline, wildlife managers in Montana are increasingly concerned about the damage these invasive pigs can cause to farmers, ranchers, the environment and Montana’s outdoor recreation economy. 

Cattle grazing
LHOON / Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Montana is expanding the area where cattle producers are required to vaccinate animals at risk for the disease brucellosis. The Montana Department of Livestock will travel the state this month to remind ranchers and address questions ahead of next calving season.

two wolves standing together
Jeremy Weber / Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Hunters and anglers in Montana can now fund wolf mitigation and control efforts. The optional donation on licenses comes from a bill signed into law this legislative session.

The Montana Department of Livestock is investigating bovine tuberculosis after three diagnoses with potential connections to Montana herds.
Cattle on Weston Merrill's family ranch

  The Montana Department of Livestock is investigating three cases of bovine tuberculosis with potential connections to Montana herds.