MISSOULA, Mont.—The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, an international conservation organization with a focus on habitat protection and enhancement, has announced its 2008 project grants for Idaho.

Grants will affect Blaine, Boise, Bonneville, Camas, Clearwater, Caribou, Custer, Idaho, Lemhi, Teton and Valley counties. An additional project has statewide interest.

“This is all about ensuring the future of elk, other wildlife and their habitat in Idaho,” said David Allen, Elk Foundation president and CEO. “Grants are based on revenues from Elk Foundation fundraising banquets in Idaho, as well as worthy project proposals.”

For 2008, 16 grants totaling $113,344 will help fund the following Idaho conservation projects, listed by county:

Blaine County—Plant bitterbrush on 45 acres and seed 320 acres of native grass and shrubs to restore elk habitat in wildfire area in Sawtooth National Forest; prescribed burn 700 acres to improve habitat diversity on BLM lands.

Boise County—Research project to help wildlife managers predict predation impacts and develop management plans for wolves (also affects Valley County); treat and prescribed burn 500 acres to improve elk habitat in Boise National Forest.

Bonneville County—Research project to study competition for food between elk and mule deer at Tex Creek Wildlife Management Area.

Camas County
—Thin 360 acres of conifer encroachment to restore aspen stands and enhance elk habitat in Sawtooth National Forest (also affects Blaine County).

Clearwater County—Prescribed burn up to 20,000 acres to enhance elk winter range in Clearwater National Forest (also affects Idaho County).

Idaho County—Prescribed burn 225 acres of summer range to enhance elk habitat in Nez Perce National Forest; prescribed burn 670 acres of conifer encroachment to restore grasslands in Nez Perce National Forest; treat 270 acres of noxious weeds in the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness (also affects Lemhi, Valley and Custer counties).

Lemhi County—Prescribed burn 903 acres of conifer encroachment to enhance elk habitat on BLM lands.

Statewide (all counties)—Multi-state research project to study elk calf survival and mortality related to climate, wolves and habitat quality.

Teton County—Thin conifer encroachment on 125 acres to improve elk habitat in Caribou-Targhee National Forest.

Since 1984, the Elk Foundation and its partners have completed more than 330 conservation projects in Idaho with a value of nearly $20 million. Partners for 2008 projects in Idaho include the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, Idaho Department of Agriculture, Idaho Department of Fish and Game, Idaho State University, University of Montana and other agencies and organizations.

About the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation
Founded in 1984 and headquartered in Missoula, Mont., the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring the future of elk, other wildlife and their habitat. The Elk Foundation and its partners have permanently protected or enhanced over 5.2 million acres, a land area larger than Connecticut, Delaware and District of Columbia combined. More than 500,000 acres previously closed to public access are now open for hunting, fishing and other recreation. The Elk Foundation has more than 150,000 members, a staff of 150 and 10,000 active volunteers. To help protect wild elk country or learn more about the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, visit www.elkfoundation.org or call 800-CALL-ELK.