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Effectiveness of a highway overpass to promote landscape connectivity and movement of moose and roe deer in Sweden
Karlstad University, Faculty of Social and Life Sciences, Department of Biology.
Karlstad University, Faculty of Social and Life Sciences, Department of Health and Environmental Sciences.
Department of Biology, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, USA.
2008 (English)In: Landscape and Urban Planning, Vol. 85, no 2, 133-139 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Ungulate-vehicle accidents accounted for approximately 60% of the total police reported traffic accidents in Sweden during the 1990s. While exclusion fences are effective at reducing such collisions, they create a new threat to wildlife by limiting individual movements and access to resources. To promote movements across fenced highways, wildlife crossing structures have been constructed in many countries. We used infrared remote cameras, track count surveys, and GPS telemetry to monitor the use of a highway overpass by moose (Alces alces) and roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) in southwestern Sweden. Moose and roe deer used the overpass mostly during nocturnal hours (84 and 76%, respectively). Overpass use declined with increased traffic volume on the highway, indicating that highway traffic affected the frequency in which ungulates used the overpass. We calculated that 5–7 individual moose used the overpass annually which is enough to maintain gene flow between otherwise disjunct subpopulations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 85, no 2, 133-139 p.
Keyword [en]
Moose; Roe deer; Remote camera; GPS-collar; Wildlife crossing; Highway overpass; Connectivity; Exclusion fencing
National Category
Ecology
Research subject
Biology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-1898DOI: 10.1016/j.landurbplan.2007.10.006OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-1898DiVA: diva2:4937
Note
I manuskriptform hade denna artikel titeln "Moose and roe deer use of a wildlife overpass in southwestern Sweden"Available from: 2007-09-07 Created: 2007-09-07 Last updated: 2011-11-25Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. The use of highway crossings to maintain landscape connectivity for moose and roe deer
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The use of highway crossings to maintain landscape connectivity for moose and roe deer
2007 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

Increasingly wildlife managers and land managers are challenged to maintain the viability and connectivity among large mammal populations. Thus, it is important that effective highway crossings are identified and optimized with respect to construction cost, facilitation of ungulate movements, and ability to reduce wildlife-vehicle collisions. The use of exclusion fencing to reduce ungulate-vehicle collisions is commonly installed along Swedish highways. However, exclusion fences may pose a threat to the viability of wildlife populations because they serve as barriers to individual movements and may limit accessibility to resources. Various types of wildlife crossings intended to reduce road-kills and increase habitat connectivity across fenced highways have been constructed throughout the world. Previous studies have evaluated the importance of structure design and size for many ungulate species, but few studies involved moose (Alces alces) which is the target species for most large ungulate mitigations in Sweden. The results of the studies are intended to facilitate the development of wildlife crossings and conventional road passages to meet ungulate demands.

We monitored moose fitted with GPS radio collars and characterized their space and habitat use patterns in southwestern Sweden. Moose had seasonal differences in habitat selection within their home range, and generally preferred clear-cuts and early successional forest, boreal forest, and glades, but avoided agricultural areas and open water. We used infrared remote cameras, track surveys, and GPS telemetry to monitor the use of wildlife crossings and conventional road passages by moose and roe deer (Capreolus capreolus). The upgrading of a non-fenced road to a fenced highway with three wildlife crossings decreased the moose movements across the highway by 67-89 %. Overpass use by moose and roe deer declined with increased traffic volume on the highway and both species walked during periods of low highway traffic volumes and shifted to trotting as traffic intensity increased. Low rates of human disturbances and proximity to forest edges increased use of highway underpasses by roe deer. Moose used large underpasses to a higher degree than small.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Fakulteten för samhälls- och livsvetenskaper, 2007
Series
Karlstad University Studies, ISSN 1403-8099 ; 2007:16
Keyword
wildlife crossings, Barrier effect, habitat selection, ecoduct, moose, roe deer, connectivity, conservation, overpass, underpass, highway, exclusion fencing
National Category
Biological Sciences
Research subject
Biology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-1143 (URN)978-91-7063-119-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2007-06-08, Andersalen, 11D 121, 651 88, Karlstad, 13:15
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2007-09-07 Created: 2007-09-07

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Citation style
  • apa
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Output format
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