Roadkill report names deadliest highways and costs

National News

(DISCLAIMER: Photos may be disturbing to some readers) FILE – This Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020, image provided by the California Highway Patrol, West Valley Division, shows a mountain lion found dead along Interstate 101 in Calabasas, Calif. Tens of thousands of mountain lions, bears, bighorn sheep, squirrels, birds and lizards have met their fate in collisions with vehicles across California in a study released by the Road Ecology Center at the University of California, Davis. Wednesday, Nov. 10, 2021. The study is based on more than 44,000 California Highway Patrol traffic incidents involving large wildlife between 2009 and 2020. Also included are more than 65,000 reports from members of the public via the California Roadkill Observation System phone app. (California Highway Patrol via AP)

(Disclaimer: Photos may be disturbing to some readers)

DAVIS, Calif. — Tens of thousands of mountain lions, bears, bighorn sheep, squirrels, birds and lizards have met their fate in collisions with vehicles across California.

That’s according to a “roadkill” report that names Interstate 280 in the San Francisco Bay Area as the state’s deadliest highway for wildlife.

The Road Ecology Center at the University of California, Davis mapped about 15,000 miles of roadways to identify stretches where wildlife-vehicle collisions are most likely to occur.

Mountain lions and black bears are most vulnerable to traffic collisions because they often cross highways amid shrinking habitat.

In Nevada, and some other states, wildlife bridges are used to mitigate animals being hit by vehicles.

According to the Nevada Department of Transportation “vehicle collisions with wild and domestic/feral animals result in more than 500 reported crashes, cost the Nevada public over $19 million in crash costs, and kill an estimated 5,032 wild animals.”

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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