- Associated Press - Thursday, September 22, 2016

BOZEMAN, Mont. (AP) - Montana is reopening the last closed segment of the Yellowstone River south of Livingston on Friday.

The 17.2-mile stretch between the Emigrant and Pine Creek fishing access sites was the hardest hit by a parasite that killed tens of thousands of mountain whitefish, along with other species.

The Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks on Aug. 19 banned all recreation on a 183-mile stretch of the river from Gardiner to Laurel to prevent the spread of the parasite.

The state has gradually reopened the river, but says it could be closed again if new cases of dead or dying fish are found.

Agency officials say they appreciate the patience and support of residents, visitors and business owners who were affected by the closure.

Earlier this month, a similar whitefish die-off occurred on the Snake River in southeastern Idaho.

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