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Joseph A. Burns CWB
National Threatened and Endgangered Species Program Leader
Watershed, Fish, Wildlife, Air, Rare Plants
1400 Independance Ave SW - MS1121
Washington, D.C. 20250-1121
(202) 205-0919


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Monitoring Tools

Otters on US 93 underpass monitored with cameras. Courtesy CSKT.Monitoring wildlife crossing structures for effectiveness requires a rigorous study plan to obtain valid results. Monitoring that is done for too short a period or in such a way that statistical inferences are impossible is a waste of money.

The first step in developing a monitoring plan is to identify the objectives of the investigation. Often objectives will vary by agency. For example, DOTs tend to want to justify the cost of crossing structures by ensuring that they are used by wildlife, whereas resource agencies may be interested in restoring the movement opportunities for wildlife.

We strongly encourage DOTs and resource agencies to enlist the assistance of qualified scientists to help identify objectives and to develop a rigorous study plan prior to construction.

Pre-construction monitoring is typically needed to obtain statistically defensible results.

How to Evaluate the Effectiveness of Wildlife Crossing Structures

US93 Monitoring Program

Page Last Modified: July 21, 2015

Additional Information

Aquatic biodiversity in a bucket taken from a small stream on the Cherokee NFIn the United States, a recent study estimated there are more than one million collisions between vehicles and large animals annually.

This 25-minute safety training program will help you reduce your probability of having large animal-vehicle collisions, especially with deer.