Small mammal use of modified culverts on the Lolo South project of western Montana – an update

  • Published source details Foresman K.R. (2003) Small mammal use of modified culverts on the Lolo South project of western Montana – an update. Proceedings of the 2003 International Conference on Ecology and Transportation, Center for Transportation and the Environment, North Carolina State University Raleigh NC, USA, 342-343.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Install tunnels/culverts/underpass under roads

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation
  1. Install tunnels/culverts/underpass under roads

    A study in 2001–2003 along a highway through wetlands in Montana, USA (Foresman 2003) found that a range of mammals used culverts, including those with shelves fastened to sides. Twenty-three mammal species used culverts. These included six of the seven small mammal species that were recorded by trapping outside tunnel entrances; meadow vole Microtus pennsylvanicus, deer mouse Peromyscus maniculatus, vagrant shrew Sorex vagrans, Columbian ground squirrel Spermophilus columbianus, short-tailed weasel Mustela erminea and striped skunk Mephitis mephitis. Other mammals recorded using culverts included white-tailed deer Odocoileus virginianus, muskrat Ondatra zibethicus, raccoon Procyon lotor, coyote Canis latrans and red fox Vulpes vulpes. When water covered culvert floors, deer mice, short-tailed weasels, striped skunks and raccoons travelled along shelves in culverts. Meadow voles used tubes along culvert shelves. At least ten culverts (total number not clear) were monitored along a 6-mile section of Highway 93. Five had 25-inch-wide shelves installed. Culverts included some of 3–4 feet diameter and may have included others up to 10 feet wide. Monitoring was conducted from October 2001 to 2003 using heat- and motion-triggered cameras. Each month (March–October), small mammal populations adjacent to culverts were censused using 25 live traps, over three days.

    (Summarised by: Rebecca K. Smith)

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