Governor declares invasive species emergency

Gov. Steve Bullock issued an executive order Wednesday declaring a statewide natural resource emergency for Montana water bodies due to the detection of the larvae of invasive aquatic mussels at Tiber Reservoir and suspected detections at Canyon Ferry Reservoir and the Milk and Missouri rivers. The order proclaiming an invasive species emergency frees up $750,000 in emergency state funds and also creates an interagency rapid response team to address the threat, said Greg Lemon, a spokesman for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks. “The big thing it does is it frees up some state funding to help address the situation,” Lemon said. The response team will go to work on addressing the situation, which has gone from one suspect water sample to a positive sample at Tiber Reservoir and now additional suspect samples at Canyon Ferry, The Missouri and Milk rivers over the past month.

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