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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Effects and mitigation of road impacts on individual movement behavior of wildcats

Published source details

Klar N., Herrmann M. & Kramer-Schadt S. (2009) Effects and mitigation of road impacts on individual movement behavior of wildcats. The Journal of Wildlife Management, 73, 631-638


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Install barrier fencing along roads Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A controlled study in 2001–2005 along a motorway through forest and agricultural land in Germany (Klar et al. 2009) found that installing roadside fencing designed to keep wildcats Felis silvestris off the road reduced road-related wildcat mortality. Wildcat mortality was lower where wildcat fencing was installed (0.07 deaths/km/year) than in areas with other types of fencing (0.41–0.44 deaths/km/year). This difference was not tested for statistical significance. In 2002, two-metre-high wildcat fencing, with 5 × 5 cm mesh, a 50-cm-wide metal sheet overhang and a board down to 30 cm below ground, was installed along 6.4 km of road. Fine-meshed fence (same specifications as the wildcat fence, but without the overhang) was installed along 4 km of road. Standard wildlife fencing was installed on 7 km of road. Wildcat mortality data collected by researchers was supplemented by reports from motorway authorities and members of the public.

(Summarised by Alison Huyett )

Install overpasses over roads/railways Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A study in 2001–2005 along a motorway through forest and agricultural land in Germany (Klar et al. 2009) found that most overpasses, viaducts and underpasses were used by wildcats Felis silvestris to cross roads. Wildcats used crossing structures on 18 of 21 (85%) of the occasions in which they were recorded <50 m from the motorway. Open-span viaducts were used by the highest proportion of cats (five out of seven for which viaducts fell within their home ranges). Forest road overpass were used by one out of eight cats for which road overpasses fell within their home ranges. Two open-span viaducts (335–660 m wide, 29 m long), two forest road overpasses (6 m wide, 46–61 m long) and three underpasses were monitored in 2002–2005. Twelve wildcats were radio-collared between January 2001 and February 2005. Animals were tracked at night for 3–30 months each, to monitor their road crossings.

(Summarised by Alison Huyett )

Install barrier fencing and underpasses along roads Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A study in 2001–2005 along a motorway through forest and agricultural land in Germany (Klar et al. 2009) found that most underpasses and overpasses, in areas with roadside fences, were used by wildcats Felis silvestris to cross roads. Wildcats used crossing structures on 18 of the 21 occasions on which they were recorded <50 m from the motorway. The three underpasses were each used by one cat from a total of eight wildcats that had underpasses located within their home ranges. One 40-m-wide underpass and two road underpasses (9–14 m wide), along with two open-span viaducts and two forest road overpasses, were monitored in 2002–2005. All underpasses were 29 m long. Underpasses were connected to fencing that was designed specifically to exclude wildcats from the road. Twelve wildcats were radio-collared between January 2001 and February 2005. Animals were tracked at night for 3–30 months each.

(Summarised by Alison Huyett )