Evaluation of wildlife warning reflectors for altering white-tailed deer behavior along roadways

  • Published source details D'Angelo G.J., D'Angelo J.G., Gallagher G.R., Osborn D.A., Miller K.V. & Warren R.J. (2006) Evaluation of wildlife warning reflectors for altering white-tailed deer behavior along roadways. Wildlife Society Bulletin, 34, 1175-1183.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Install wildlife warning reflectors along roads

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation
  1. Install wildlife warning reflectors along roads

    A before-and-after study in 2004–2005 at a college campus in Georgia, USA (D'Angelo et al. 2006) found that wildlife warning reflectors did not reduce white-tailed deer Odocoileus virginianus behaviours that were likely to cause collisions with vehicle. When red or blue-green reflectors were installed, there was a proportional increase in behaviours that were likely to cause deer–vehicle collisions. White or amber reflectors resulted in an increased rate both of responses that increase and that decrease collision likelihood. A total of 1,370 deer responses were recorded. A smaller proportion of animals stopped moving toward the road as a vehicle approached when reflectors were installed (red: 13%; white: 55%; blue-green: 14%; amber: 50%) compared to before reflectors were installed (64%). In two test areas (5 km apart), 15 posts were installed 15 m apart, staggered on opposite sides of the road. After two weeks, Strieter-Lite Wild Animal Highway Warning Reflectors were installed on posts (61–76 cm above road). Deer–vehicle interactions were observed using an infrared camera for four hours/night before (15 nights in November 2004–January 2005) and after installation of reflectors (January–May 2005). Two reflector colours were tested in each area for 15 nights each.

    (Summarised by: Rebecca K. Smith)

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