EFFECTS OF HIGHWAY CONSTRUCTION AND USE ON BIG GAME POPULATIONS

Pronghorn antelope, mule deer, and elk are affected by right-of-way fences and highway traffic. At least 153 antelope, 561 mule deer, and 10 elk have been killed through vehicle accidents along a 55-mile section of I-80 west of Laramie, Wyoming, during a 5.5-year period. Since antelope are reluctant to jump fences and use underpasses, I-80 is a barrier and the herds are managed accordingly. Antelope can be kept off the highway by maintaining good woven wire fences and preventing snow from drifting over the right-of-way fence. Mule deer jump right-of-way fences, but can be forced to use underpasses by using deer-proof fencing. Both resident and migratory mule deer are affected by roads and traffic. Proper management should provide safe deer crossings thus increasing the safety of the highway user. Since elk are large, they present a greater hazard to motorists, and should be discouraged from crossing highways by proper fencing and road location. New techniques using heart-rate telemetry shows great potential for use in further studies of animal behavior in relation to the ever increasing activities of man.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Rocky Mountain Forest & Range Experiment Station

    Colorado State University, 240 West Prospect Street
    Fort Collins, CO  USA  80521

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  USA  20590
  • Authors:
    • Ward, A L
    • Cupal, J J
    • Goodwin, G A
    • Morris, H D
  • Publication Date: 1976-3

Media Info

  • Pagination: 101 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00153962
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Technical Information Service
  • Report/Paper Numbers: FHWA/RD-76-174 Final Rpt.
  • Contract Numbers: P.O. 3-1-1517
  • Files: NTIS, TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Jun 17 1977 12:00AM