Yellowstone National Park Officials Hope Bison Relocation Program Can Reduce Culling

In a bid to reduce the number of park bison that are sent to slaughter, Yellowstone National Park officials are exploring the process of a quarantine program that could be developed to provide brucellosis-free animals to tribes and other entities looking to build bison herds.

In the past, in their bid to reduce the park's bison population, Yellowstone officials have had some bison shipped to slaughter. Now the park is seeking public comment on a plan to develop a quarantine program at one or more quarantine facilities that could be located within the national park, on tribal lands, or elsewhere. If created, the program is seen as a way to help conserve the species, "support the culture and nutrition of Native Americans, and reduce the number of Yellowstone bison that are shipped to processing facilities," a park release said.

Public meetings to discuss the proposal are set for:

* Monday, August 18 in Gardiner, Mont.: Yellowstone Association Headquarters, 308 Park Street

* Tuesday, August 19 in Bozeman, Mont.: Homewood Suites, 1023 E. Baxter Lane

Both presentation-style meetings begin at 6 p.m.

An Environmental Assessment (EA) will be prepared in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA).

You can also submit comments on-line at this site, or mail them to: Compliance Office, Attn: Yellowstone Bison Quarantine EA, P.O. Box 168, Yellowstone National Park, WY, 82190.

Comments will not be accepted by fax, e-mail, or in any other way than those specified above. All comments must be received by midnight MDT, September 12, 2014.