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SPRING FLOOD OUTLOOK
CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Fremont County residents and disaster response officials are making preparations for spring flooding.
Predictions are that the county could see its biggest runoff from the mountain snowpack in decades.
National Weather Service hydrologists say the Wind and Little Wind river watersheds in Fremont County have a high potential for flooding.
Lander emergency management coordinator Nick Hudson says this year's runoff could rival 1963 when flooding caused severe damage in Lander and the town is working to prepare for the high water.
County Emergency Management Coordinator Kathi Metzler says residents along rivers are already placing sandbags to protect homes and property.
Elsewhere in Wyoming, the Upper Green River Basin is also predicted to have a high potential for flooding, while several other western river basins can expect moderate to high flooding.
HABITAT OPENING DELAYED
PINEDALE, Wyo. (AP) — The Wyoming Game and Fish Department is delaying public access to some wildlife management areas around Pinedale this spring.
The agency says one of the harshest winters in western Wyoming has caused extra stress on mule deer and human activity would only add to the problem.
As a result, the department decided to delay opening the Soda Lake, Fall Creek, Halfmoon and Luke Lynch wildlife habitat management areas until May 10.
The four Game and Fish administered properties are located within a major migration corridor for the Sublette Mule Deer Herd.
The delayed opening of the Soda Lake Wildlife Habitat Management Area will also preclude anglers from accessing Soda Lake for fishing until May 10.
WYOMING MARIJUANA BUST
CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — A northern California man faces a federal drug charge after officers found more than 340 pounds of marijuana in a rental truck in northeastern Wyoming.
Court records say the possession with intent to distribute charge was filed against 57-year-old Cher Yang of Macdoel, California, last week. There is a warrant for his arrest.
KTWO-AM reports (bit.ly/2oTNggD) the case began on Jan. 22 when a Wyoming Highway Patrol trooper contacted Yang at a truck stop in Sundance. A search of the truck turned up 342 pounds (155 kilograms) of marijuana in vacuum sealed packages in moving boxes.
Court records say Yang told investigators he was being paid $20,000 to take the truck to St. Paul, Minnesota.
Crook County jail administrator Sgt. Darren Horn said Thursday that Yang was initially charged in state court and posted a $50,000 bond on March 6.
ELK REFUGE EXODUS
JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) — Wildlife officials say elks are leaving the National Elk Refuge in western Wyoming by the thousands.
The Jackson Hole News and Guide reports the official refuge count on Wednesday fell below a 2,500 threshold that allows for the opening of the multiuse pathway paralleling Highways 26, 89 and 191 located north of Jackson.
National Elk Refuge biologist Eric Cole says during the middle of feed season, elk numbers were around 9,000. In three weeks, Cole saw the elk numbers fall from 6,200 to 3,000 to 1,600.
Hundreds of bison that come to the refuge in the winter have also left. Typically elks and bison on the land are hazed north in early May, but officials are not sure whether that operation will be necessary this year.