Following up on the last post about the difficulties of documenting wildlife population numbers, this one focuses on one of, if not the largest causes of wildlife mortality, road kill, and how documenting that can help with wildlife conservation. Road kill data are notoriously vague and spotty, and difficult to access; so now with the help of Dr. Anderson from Cal. State Channel Islands in Oxnard, CA, we’ve got, you guessed it, an app! So with a broad set of data on road kill mortality coming in from far and wide, we can start to see which road crossings are most deadly, and for what kinds of wildlife. With hard data in hand, we can then approach the engineers of the State Dept. of Transportation to come up with real world solutions for avoiding animal vehicle collisions.
Download the app. at the CSUCI website and read one of Dr. Anderson’s lectures on fragmentation, roads and wildlife corridors here:
He references many other states besides CA, including New Mexico, and our own “Uncle Dave” Foreman on the subject of roadway impacts to wildlife as well as the “edge effect” that roads have on vegetation, water quality and erosion.
Its people like Dr. Anderson who are making it easier for the public to contribute to science in a way that has meaningful impacts on wildlife conservation. When the science of conservation biology can inform the way our deadly infrastructure is designed, it can help change it to something we can all live with.