Friday, May 30, 2008

Seeking Teachers & Students to Work as
2-Week Summer Field Evaluators for the
Butte Reclamation Evaluation System (BRES)

The CFWEP is seeking interested teachers and students to work in paid positions as summer field evaluators on Butte Priority Soils Operable Unit reclaimed sites. Five selected teachers and five selected students (high school, undergraduate or graduate level) will have the opportunity to collect monitoring data about the reclaimed Butte environment and gain valuable experience in practical field science. Participating teachers will also have the opportunity to earn OPI renewal credits.

• Participants will receive a one-week (Mon-Fri) BRES field evaluation training and become certified BRES field evaluators.
• Teacher-student pairs will each perform a field evaluation of BPSOU sites for a one-week (Mon-Fri) period.
• Teacher-student pairs will be responsible for inputting their week of field data into the BRES database. Database entry will be on the Monday after the end of each pair’s evaluation week.
• Teachers will be required to prepare a data summary report of their week in the field with their student; students will be required to assist in preparation of summary report and to perform one or both of the following tasks: prepare a summary report of their experience; and/or develop a science fair/research project using the skills and expertise gained in the summer experience.
• As an addendum to the summary report, teachers will be required to submit one lesson plan and/or field activity curriculum product to be used in their classroom based upon their experience.
• CFWEP staff will provide technical support and assistance throughout the project.
• All necessary equipment will be provided.
• Each participating teacher will receive a stipend of $1,500. Up to 40 OPI renewal units are available and offered free of charge.
• Each participating student will receive a stipend of $750.
• The deadline for applications is Thursday, June 5th, with successful applicants notified no later than Friday, June 6th. Training will be held during the following week, June 9th-13th. Teacher-student pairs will then be assigned dates to conduct field evaluations based on availability and BRES requirements.

To apply:
Contact Justin Ringsak, CFWEP Public Education Coordinator, at 406.496.4897, or email

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Identifying Montana Trout

This blog entry comes to you courtesy of Bader Consulting,, with fish art copyright Joseph Tomelleri, courtesy Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks.

The Bull Trout (Salvelinus confluentus) is Montana's largest migratory trout and is protected as a Threatened Species. The Montana record is 26 pounds, yet even larger fish are likely. In late Summer bull trout begin epic spawning journeys up to 100 miles. They are sensitive to changes in habitat and require colder, cleaner water than other native fish.

The Westslope Cutthroat Trout (Oncorhynchus clarki lewisi) is classified as a "sensitive" species in Montana. Once abundant, "pure strain" cutthroat (not inter-bred with other species) are now restricted to 5% of their former range. They are most often located in headwaters streams and high mountain lakes. The state record is 16 pounds from Red Eagle Lake.

Rainbow Trout (Oncoryhnchus mykiss) are relatively abundant in Montana's cold water rivers, streams and lakes. Their name comes from the colorful stripe running the length of the body. The Montana record is 33 pounds, from the Kootenai River. Rainbows often interbreed with cutthroat trout. The record hybrid is 33 pounds from Ashely Lake.

Brown Trout (Salmo trutta), also known as the German Brown, is a large trout which spawns in the fall. They take their name from the brown-yellow color of their bodies. Attaining large size, the Montana record is a 29 pound fish from Wade Lake.

The Brook Trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) is a non-native fish and the smallest of the trout species. The Montana record is 9 pounds from Lower Two Medicine Lake. They are most often found in smaller tributary streams. Brook trout have displaced native trout from the lower reaches of many streams. Since they are chars, they can interbreed with native bull trout, often resulting in sterile offspring.

Use These Good Trout Fishing Practices:

Know Your Fish
Know the regulations for your location
Use single, barbless hooks
Avoid fishing in hot weather & high water temps
Practice quick release techniques

For More Information, visit:

Monday, May 12, 2008

Volunteers of the Month
Marko Lucich & Tom Malloy

Ahoy, CFWEP followers! The program is pleased to announce its newest honoree as Volunteer of the Month. First of all, let’s be clear, the “of the month” designation has lost its punctuality, and even though we will continue to call it our “VOM” award, it will be given out on a more “every other month” basis. The “Volunteer of the Every Other Month Award” just doesn’t have a great ring to it, though, considering this is coming from the already unwieldy acronym “CFWEP.”

This month, the CFWEP has decided to give our prestigious award to two individuals for the first time. Congratulations to the Butte Chamber of Commerce’s Marko Lucich and Tom Malloy of Butte-Silver Bow City-County as Co-Volunteers of the Month!

Marko is the director of the Butte Chamber and has graciously provided his Visitors Center on George Street, free of charge, as a first-stop for visiting classrooms to The Mining City, not to mention the headquarters for the CFWEP’s volunteer training workshops. Marko also gives the CFWEP the key to the Berkeley Pit Viewing Stand, allowing us to bring students to the area’s favorite Superfund site all through the year.

Tom is an environmental engineer and the Reclamation Manager for Butte-Silver Bow City-County. Tom has been volunteering with the CFWEP in various capacities for the past few years. Particularly, in the last few months, he has arranged for two middle and elementary school classroom visits to the Anselmo Mine hoist house and mine yard, hosted an environmental studies group from Billings on a tour of Butte restoration sites and, most recently, spent a day in the field with 75 Butte seventh graders on Silver Bow Creek, no easy feat for anyone.

The CFWEP greatly depends on the expertise and cooperation of professional scientists like Mr. Malloy and the flexibility and generosity of local citizens like Marko and his organization in order to successfully continue its educational endeavors with the youth of the Upper Clark Fork Basin. Thank you very much, Tom and Marko!