Conservation Campaigns

Upper Missouri Watershed Alliance (UMOWA) works to improve the Upper Missouri Watershed through education and "boot-on-the-ground" restoration projects.

UMOWA prides itself on being the Upper Missouri River's biggest advocate for aquatic health. Our campaigns aim to improve Missouri River anglers' stewardship, access, and water quality while conserving the riparian ecosystem for all who rely on this precious system.

Learn more

Photo courtesy of Clay Reidee

Respect the Redd

Due to recent concern about anglers disturbing trout redd zones, UMOWA has posted signs near vulnerable patches of gravel along the Missouri River.

A “redd” occurs when a female trout uses her tail to dig a depression in the gravel. She deposits and covers the eggs with loose gravel and waits for a male trout to fertilize them.

Learn how to identify redd zones here.


As Montana’s fishing industry increases, the number of times a fish is caught goes up, so the care and handling of each fish are important for ensuring high survival rates.

“Most fish that are brought to hand are still amped up based on the release of glucose to fuel their ‘fight or flight’ response to being caught. It can take hours for a fish to physiologically return to normal once it is released. The longer you handle a fish, the more stressful it is for them, which compounds the stress associated with capture.” -Keep Fish Wet

After hooking a fish, the best practice is to limit fight time with the fish, gently hold the fish in the water with wet hands, and take a photo of the fish in the water.

Fish Photography: Ensure your camera accessible and ready to shoot. Count down shots as “3, 2, 1, Lift and Click.”

The goal is to always prioritize the fish’s health. If conditions do not allow a quick picture, then release the fish as soon as possible.

Learn more about Keep Fish Wet.

Photo by Keep Fish Wet Ambassador, Uroš Kristan.
Photo courtesy of Mark Raisler. Information from Keep Fish Wet.
Photo courtesy of Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks.

Clean. Drain. Dry.

Invasive species threaten the health of Montana’s waterways. Upper Missouri Watershed Alliance encourages all floaters, boaters, and anglers to follow all Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks invasive species laws, and #CleanDrainDry your watercraft after every use.

Learn more about Clean, Drain, Dry here.