Vital bird habitat conserved on Mill Creek in lower valley
On December 30th, another vital piece of bird habitat and open space was conserved in the Flathead!
A conservation easement now protects 53.4 acres of land owned by Marty and Linda Boehm located along Mill Creek near its confluence with the Flathead River south of Creston. The conservation easement permanently protects 40.9 acres of wetlands and quality riparian habitat and 0.6 miles of Mill Creek, a warm spring creek which provides important migratory waterfowl habitat in spring when other areas are ice-covered and in winter for many birds. The property is used by nearly 190 species of birds, 28 of which are priority species for conservation, and thousands of migratory waterfowl. It is also used by a plethora of wildlife including grizzly bear, black bear, mountain lion, coyote, red fox, and otter. The property’s wetlands and riparian habitat as well as its 44 acres of the 100-year floodplain and 53 acres of shallow groundwater help protect the water quality in the Flathead River and Flathead Lake. The Boehm conservation easement adds to a network of conserved land totaling almost 12,000 acres important to sustaining the Flathead River and Flathead Lake’s excellent water quality, abundant fish and wildlife, and the incredible quality of life we enjoy in the Flathead Valley.
“We are very pleased to work with Flathead Land Trust to preserve this special area not only for the wildlife and bird life that is so abundant but also for future generations to enjoy. This natural treasure attracted us to the Flathead Valley 46 years ago when we left the military. With the subdivision pressure on the lakes and rivers, we feel it necessary to preserve as much of the natural beauty as we can,” said Marty Boehm.
This conservation project was made possible with a federal grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service North American Wetland Conservation Act Program and a grant from the Cinnabar Foundation. The North American Wetland Conservation Act Program provides grants to protect migratory bird habitat and wetlands to ensure sustainable populations of waterfowl and other wetland-dependent species in North America. The Cinnabar Foundation provides grants to preserve and protect the natural amenities of Montana in perpetuity.