New this season, an Aquatic Invasive Species Prevention Pass is required for all individuals who fish in Montana. This new program was initiated by the 2017 Montana Legislature and recently signed into law by Governor Steve Bullock to help fund the fight against aquatic invasive species in Montana.
This pass may be purchased at any Fish, Wildlife & Parks office, license provider (fly shop or retailer that sells licenses) or online. The pass is a one-time / per year fee of $2 for residents and $15 for non-residents. Anglers who have already purchased their fishing license for the season or for an upcoming trip will need to purchase the pass online or visit a license provider and can have the pass added to their license and then reprinted.
The selling of these passes is anticipated to generate about $3.2 million in revenue per year, and will do toward increasing the number of inspection stations around the state, operating decontamination stations at chosen reservoirs, an expanded public education and outreach effort, and doubling the water sampling efforts for mussel larvae around Montana.
“We know this will be an inconvenience for some anglers, but protecting the health of our waterways is critical,” said FWP director Martha Williams. “The AIS program we have in place is our best chance at keeping mussels from spreading to Montana waters and at keeping other invasive species from gaining a foothold in the state.”