The Ghosts of the Madison Chapter of the Mule Deer Foundation hosted a banquet at the Ennis Rodeo Arena in Ennis. About 100 people attended and the money raised at the banquet will go to improving and protecting mule deer habitat. Mule deer numbers have been declining across the West for a number of years. (J. Taylor photo)

Mule Deer Foundation’s Ennis banquet draws good crowd to Rodeo Arena

ENNIS - The Mule Deer Foundation’s (MDF) Ghosts of the Madison Chapter held its third annual fundraising banquet at the Ennis Rodeo Grounds Saturday, July 28.

The banquet offered the approximately 100 attendees a chance to visit, socialize, share hunting and fishing stories and perhaps gain a few prizes while raising money for mule deer conservation.

MDF’s mission is to improve and protect mule deer habitat, through easements and land acquisitions

So far, MDF has helped restore or enhance more than 1.5 million acres of critical mule deer habitat in 19 western states, including Montana. 

One of the chapter’s most recent local efforts was helping Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks complete an ongoing effort to improve sagebrush grassland habitat critical to area mule deer herds on the Robb-Ledford Wildlife Management Area (WMA). Using hand loppers and chainsaws, volunteers removed conifers that were beginning to shade out large tracts of sagebrush grasslands on the WMA.  This project was part of a larger effort by local MDF chapters to improve and enhance intermountain and sagebrush grasslands across southwestern Montana in hopes of reversing a continual decrease in mule deer populations. 

This habitat provides a critical food source for mule deer almost year around but most importantly in the winter months. 

During 2018, MDF chapters have contributed more than $70,000 to habitat enhancement work in SW Montana.

MDF is the only conservation group in North America dedicated to restoring, improving and protecting mule deer and their habitat, with a focus on science and program efficiency.

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The Madisonian

65 N. MT Hwy 287
Ennis, MT 59729

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