Permeability of the Trans-Canada highway to wildlife in Banff National Park: importance of crossing structures and factors influencing their effectiveness

  • Published source details Clevenger A.P. (1998) Permeability of the Trans-Canada highway to wildlife in Banff National Park: importance of crossing structures and factors influencing their effectiveness. Proceedings of the 1998 International Conference on Wildlife Ecology and Transportation, Florida Department of Transportation, Tallahasee, Florida USA, 109-119.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Install barrier fencing and underpasses along roads

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation
  1. Install barrier fencing and underpasses along roads

    A study in 1996–1997 along a highway through forest and grassland in Alberta, Canada (Clevenger 1998; same experimental set-up as Clevenger & Waltho 2000) found that underpasses, in areas with roadside fencing, were used by at least 10 species of medium- and large-sized mammals. Over 12 months at 11 underpasses, there were 1,338 detections of elk Cervus canadensis, 538 of deer Odocoileus spp., 373 of coyotes Canis latrans, 97 of black bears Ursus americanus, 77 of wolves Canis lupus, 29 of cougars Puma concolor and six of grizzly bears Ursus arctos. Most visits resulted in completed passages (96–100%, depending on species). Bighorn sheep Ovis canadensis, mountain goats Oreamnos americanus and moose Alces alces were also detected (frequency not reported). Elk, deer and coyotes used all 11 underpasses, black bears used nine, wolves used six, cougars used five and grizzly bears used three underpasses. The study was conducted along 27 km of a four-lane highway. Wildlife movements were monitored through seven cement open-span underpasses, under two bridges over creeks and through two metal culverts. Barrier fencing, 2.4 m high, ran alongside the highway. Underpasses, constructed in 1986–1991, were located in twinned highway sections. Animal tracks were monitored at each end of each crossing within a sand, silt and clay mix (2 × 4 m), every 3–4 days from November 1996 to October 1997.

    (Summarised by: Ricardo Rocha)

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