LETTER: Montana BHA Supports Wildlife Accommodations for the Cougar Creek Bridge Replacement Project

The Honorable Pete Buttigieg, Secretary
U.S. Department of Transportation
1200 New Jersey Ave, SE
Washington, DC 20590


Re: WCPP Discretionary Grant Letter of Support: Wildlife Accommodations for the Cougar Creek Bridge Replacement Project


Dear Secretary Buttigieg:


On behalf of the Montana Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers, we offer this letter in support of the Montana Department of Transportation’s (MDT) Wildlife Crossing Pilot Program (WCPP) discretionary grant funding application for the Wildlife Accommodations for the Cougar Creek Bridge Replacement Project.

If approved, this project would help reduce the number of wildlife vehicle collisions (WVCs) in a wildlife-rich area of the state experiencing growing human traffic. For example, from 2011 to 2020, WVCs have increased 36 percent in this area alone. Replacing the entire Cougar Creek bridge with a longer and wider structure flanked by wildlife paths and higher under bridge clearances will help keep both the public motorist and the public wildlife safer.

The project area is utilized heavily by many of the critters our members care deeply about (deer, elk, moose, bears, etc), and we strongly support improvements to the Cougar Creek bridge. Furthermore, since it's an area with high densities of wildlife and wildlife movements, it's an ideal place to pilot the proposed first-of-its-kind-in-Montana animal detection system to warn motorists when wildlife is present. Our hope is that this relatively inexpensive technology can prove effective in this area, signaling that if it can work here, it can work in other parts of the state as well.

On behalf of our members and supporters in Montana, I thank you for your consideration of this important project and look forward to its swift completion and its beneficial impacts.



Chris McCarthy, Gallatin Board Member
The Montana Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers

About Chris McCarthy

The more I learn about people, the more I like my dog.

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