Using video surveillance to estimate wildlife use of a highway underpass

  • Published source details Kleist A.M., Lancia R.A. & Doerr P.D. (2007) Using video surveillance to estimate wildlife use of a highway underpass. Journal of Wildlife Management, 71, 2792-2800.


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 2003–2005 along a highway through deciduous woodland in North Carolina, USA (Kleist et al. 2007) found that mammals used a wildlife underpass. An estimated 299 mammal crossings of at least 10 species occurred (based on 126 crossings observed on a sample of video surveillance). Of these, an estimated 185 were white-tailed deer Odocoileus virginianus crossings. At least 17 deer approached the underpass but retreated without crossing. Other mammals crossing included red or gray fox Vulpes vulpes or Urocyon cinereoargenteus, raccoon Procyon lotor, woodchuck Marmota monax, gray squirrel Sciurus carolinensis and chipmunk Tamias striatus. Only four incidences of mammals killed by vehicles were recorded from December 2003 to June 2005. Two digital ultra-low-light video cameras and infrared spotlights monitored underpass use below a four-lane highway between December 2003 and May 2005. A sample of videos was viewed from 458 days of continual video recordings. The underpass was constructed in 1955, encompassing a 6-m width either side of a stream. It was 2–3 m high and 41 m long. Weekly surveys of vehicle-killed animals were undertaken on a 1.8-km section of road encompassing the underpass.

    (Summarised by: Rebecca K. Smith)

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