Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks officials in Helena have approved once again a plan by landowners in the Paradise Valley to control the movement of elk that may be infected with brucellosis. 

Director of Communication and Education Ron Asheim said the effort continues to keep wild elk from mixing with commercial cattle, because of the risk of exposing the livestock to brucellosis.

"This is the third year that the plan has been in place by a local working group made up of landowners, sportsmen and the agency," Aasheim said. "The plan potentially includes some fencing and in some cases, some lethal removal. The whole idea is to minimize the potential risk of transmission of brucellosis to livestock from elk."

Brucellosis can cause commercial cattle to prematurely abort their young, and efforts are continually underway to minimize contact between wild game such as elk and bison with livestock.

Aasheim said the plan must be re-approved every year, and the plan would only be in place until spring.