February 2018 - Chronic Wasting Disease
- Chronic wasting disease (CWD), recently detected in Montana, is a progressive and fatal transmissible spongiform encephalopathy in wild cervids including deer, elk, moose, and reindeer.
- Precautions when field dressing wild cervids include wearing gloves and eye protection, minimizing handling of brain and spinal tissues, and practicing good hand hygiene.
- To date, worldwide, no reported human cases of CWD have occurred; however, consuming meat from infected animals is not recommended
November 2017 - Winter Wood Smoke
- Smoke from wood stoves in the winter can be as hazardous to your health as wildfire smoke in the summer.
- Mountain valleys can experience temperature inversions causing pollution from wood stoves and other wood heaters to build to dangerous levels; Today’s Air maintains up-to-date air quality information for Montanans.
- Using an EPA certified wood stove with appropriate wood burning techniques, including burning only dry, well-seasoned wood and preventing the fire from smoldering, can reduce the amount of smoke released into the air.
August 2017 - Harmful Algae Blooms
- Algae are important organisms in lakes, reservoirs, and ponds but some algae can develop toxin producing harmful algae blooms (HABs).
- Harmful algae blooms appear as “pea soup”, “grass clippings,” or “green latex paint” and are increasing throughout Montana and the United States. Suspected blooms may be reported to environmental and public health officials to aid in early warning and prevention for others.
- HABs are presenting potential health risks to humans, animals and the environment. People should limit their contact with the water once a bloom is suspected or observed.
August 2017 - Wildfire Conditions
- Montana has been declared a state of emergency with over 16 large wildfires currently burning statewide and over 500,000 acres burned since the start of the season. For news and up-to-date Montana wildfire information visit the Incident Information System (InciWeb).
- An evacuation plan for families, pets and animals can help avoid confusion and prevent injuries, especially during extreme wildfire conditions.
- Take steps to protect yourself and your family; be aware of your local air quality and know your health risks.