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FWP considers new funding sources for Fort Peck fish hatchery

US - The manager of Montana's new multi-species fish hatchery at Fort Peck has resigned to manage a hatchery in Juneau, Alaska.

Andrew Ollenburg, who has managed the hatchery since before it opened in May 2006, told Fish, Wildlife and Parks managers two weeks ago that he has taken a position as manager of a fish hatchery in Juneau. His last day at the Fort Peck facility is Dec. 8.

Ollenburg's resignation comes as a Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks-sponsored committee is considering options to fund operation of the $22 million hatchery before it runs out of money in 2011.

On the table are proposals to either increase the cost of a warm-water fishing stamp — the only source of funds for hatchery operations now — or eliminate the stamp altogether and raise the cost of the general fishing license by a dollar or two while also raising coldwater species, such as trout, at the hatchery.

While the new hatchery includes raceways, needed to raise trout, legislation authorizing construction of the hatchery forbids it. The facility sits nearly idle except for four months in the spring, when it runs almost to capacity raising walleye and pike.

Source: AlaskaJournalOfCommerce

Ellen Hardy

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