The last few decades in Montana have seen a remarkable recovery in wildlife populations. For example, Montana’s elk population was down to almost 20,000 animals in 1940. By 1970, it had increased somewhat to 55,000. But after that, we’ve seen rapid growth to nearly 160,000 animals today. That’s simply an astounding recovery. And other species, like deer and antelope, are at or near all-time highs as well. The restoration of Montana wildlife is due to a number of factors, but the predominant reason is the efforts of Montana landowners. A great deal of the credit goes to private property owners for changing management practices and improving habitat.