News and Notes

New Wildlife Crossings in the West Designed to Save Animals’ Lives

This story appeared on UPI on February 6, 2020

By Jean Lotus

Keeping wildlife corridors connected gives animals a better chance of species survival, said Matt Skroch, a Portland, Ore.-based manager for the Pew Charitable Trusts. He focuses on these corridors.

“We have known large herds of animals were migrating across the west since European settlement, but we didn’t have a good sense of where they went,” Skroch said. “These GPS collars represent an age of discovery that gives us new information that will allow us to make better policy decisions to conserve this migratory habitat.”

More wildlife overpasses and underpasses are coming to highways in the western United States, thanks to a better understanding of migration corridors boosted by GPS collar technology.

Between 1 million and 2 million vehicle collisions with large animals occur every year in the United States, according to the U.S. Federal Highway Administration. Those collisions cause almost 30,000 injuries and about 200 deaths a year — and billions of dollars in auto repair costs.

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