Road permeability issues and solutions for migrating ungulates
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Road permeability issues and solutions for migrating ungulates. David Rosengarten. Winter Ecology – Spring 2008 Mountain Research Station – University of Colorado, Boulder. General Negative Effects Of Roads. Mortality from construction and collisions Habitat fractionation

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Road permeability issues and solutions for migrating ungulates

Road permeability issues and solutions for migrating ungulates

David Rosengarten

Winter Ecology – Spring 2008

Mountain Research Station – University of Colorado, Boulder


General negative effects of roads

General Negative Effects Of Roads

  • Mortality from construction and collisions

  • Habitat fractionation

  • Modified animal behavior

  • Exotic species introduction

  • Restriction of wildlife movement

  • Reduction of gene flow, biodiversity


Methods of observing crossings

Methods of Observing Crossings

  • GPS

  • Video

  • Tracks

  • Collisions


Seasonal ranges

Seasonal Ranges


Why did the ungulate cross the road

Why Did The Ungulate Cross The Road?

Seasonal differences in crossing frequencies demonstrate winter effect on mammals

A different study observed this trend as well in elk and deer, observing 3077 crossings in the summer and only 494 in winter. (Clevenger 2004)

Graph of crossing elk/approaching elk by month (Dodd 2007)


Factors influencing crossing frequency and location

Factors Influencing Crossing Frequency and Location

Elk

  • Season

  • Tolerance

  • Gender

  • Nutrients

  • Human

  • Traffic

  • Weekday

  • Fences

  • Crossing structures

There is a lot of interaction between and within these two sets of factors


Crossing structure design

Crossing Structure Design

Placement:

Habitat quality has shown a relation to preferred crossing areas

Dimensions:

The design of a structure will determine what animals are willing/able to use it

Limitations:

Requirements of different species require high variability in crossing structure design


Conclusions

Conclusions

  • Although a severe ecological barrier, roads are crossed by mammals due to larger forcings

  • Seasonality has a large influence on ungulate movement and sensitivity to roads

  • Crossing structures can mitigate this effect but much more work needs to be done to determine the most effective methods


Works cited

Works Cited

  • S.M. Alexander, N.M. Waters. “The effects of highway transportation corridors on wildlife: a case study of Banff National Park” Transportation Research Part C 8 (2000) 307±320

  • A.P. Clevenger, N. Waltho. “Performance indices to identify attributes of highway crossing structures facilitating movement of large mammals” Biological Conservation 121 (2005) 453–464

  • N.L. Dodd, J.W. Gagnon, A.L. Manzo, R.E. Schweinsburg. “Video Surveillance to Assess Highway Underpass Use by Elk in Arizona” JOURNAL OF WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT 71-2 (2007) 637–645

  • N.L.Dodd, J.W. Gagnon, S. Boe, E.E. Schweinsburg. “Characteristics of elk-vehicle collisions and comparison to GPS-determined highway crossing patterns” (2005) http://repositories.cdlib.org/jmie/roadeco/Dodd2005a

  • S.C. Trombulak, C.A. Frissell. “Review of Ecological Effects of Roads on Terrestrial and Aquatic Communities” Conservation Biology V 14 no.1 (2000) 18-30

  • USDA “American Elk (Cervus elaphus)” Fish and Wildlife Habitat Management Leaflet no. 11 (1999)


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