Rockies Today, Feb. 10

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Top news links, courtesy of Mountain West News.

Montana FWP to consider city's request for non-motorized river designation
Representatives of Whitefish will make a pitch at the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks Commission meeting Thursday in Helena to designate the stretch of the Whitefish River that moves through the city as non-motorized.
Flathead Beacon; Feb. 10

Montana's rural areas see shortage of general practice physicians
Although Montana doesn't have hard numbers about a looming shortage of doctors to serve rural communities, the Montana Medical Association is working on a survey of current practitioners to find out where they are working and when they plan to retire to help get a handle on where the greatest need for such health care providers will be.
Great Falls Tribune; Feb. 9

Farming, fracking collide in Colorado
A new report said that half of the 39,294 oil and gas wells drilled with the method known as hydraulic fracturing since 2011 are in drought-stressed areas of the United States, and in Colorado, that percentage is nearly 97 percent.
Denver Post; Feb. 10

Boise Parks releases second phase of river plan
The river-shaper on the Boise River proved to be an overnight success for Boise Parks and Recreation, which is now planning two stretches of flat river on the river separated by a whitewater section.
Idaho Statesman; Feb. 10

Farm Bill provision worries Montana wildlife advocates
A change made in the final Farm Bill that was signed into law by President Barack Obama on Friday that eliminated a $7-million annual grant program directed to brucellosis and other diseases that move from wildlife to domestic animals, but left in place a $3.5-billion, five-year program that calls for vaccine research to control diseases that threaten domestic livestock that can be carried by wild elk, deer or bison has wildlife advocates worried about what may be done to elk herds in Montana to stop the spread of brucellosis.
Missoulian; Feb. 9

Trappers make quite a catch in Idaho's West Cabinet Mountains
A young, female Canada lynx was caught in a live trap in Idaho's West Cabinet Mountains, allowing researchers from the state Department of Fish and Game who are in the middle of a study on lynx, wolverine and fishers to radio collar the lynx and release it into the wild.
Spokane Spokesman-Review; Feb. 10

Harsh winter stresses U.S. propane supplies
Because propane is not customarily stored in large quantities for local delivery, an abundant harvest that used copious amounts of the fuel to dry grain, followed by a fierce winter and an increase in export of the fuel, has led to shortages and dramatically higher prices across the United States.
New York Times; Feb. 8

Oil companies report increased production in Wyoming last year
Both Chesapeake Energy and Anadarko Petroleum Corp. reported that, in 2013, oil production in Wyoming's Powder River Basin increased, and company executives predict additional increases this year.
Casper Star-Tribune; Feb. 10

Mountain West News is a project of the Center for the Rocky Mountain West at The University of Montana. It provides a daily snapshot of news and opinion in the Rocky Mountain region of North America, giving the changing mountain West a tool to understand itself and a platform for the exchange of ideas.

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