Connectivity & Collision Hot Spots

Montanans for Safe Wildlife Passage is currently compiling all of the wildlife-vehicle collision and connectivity hotspot information sources in the state and region to identify a “Top Ten” list. Once compiled, we will reach out to road ecologists, conservationists, local governments, and agency representatives to provide feedback on our approach and look for opportunities to work together. The following reports and research exist for our region:

American Wildlands

Williamson, E. , Betsch, J., Meiklejohn, K., Olimb, S. and D. Taylor. 2009 Wildlife Highway Mortality and Linkage Assessment: A Prioritization and Planning Tool for Western Montana. American Wildlands, Bozeman, MT. Download the study as a .pdf here.

Western Transportation Institute

Hardy, Amanda. 2007. An Assessment of Wildlife-Transportation Issues in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Bozeman, MT. Download the study as a .pdf here.

Montana Department of Transportation

Bozeman Pass Wildlife Linkage and Channelization and Highway Safety Studies: Two different but related wildlife research projects on Interstate 90 at Bozeman Pass between Bozeman and Livingston, Montana have been conducted. The first project, “Bozeman Pass Wildlife Linkage and Highway Safety Pilot Study” evaluated the effectiveness of wildlife fencing installed at the Montana Rail Link (MRL) overpass on I-90 near Bear Canyon.The second project tested the use of Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) in addressing wildlife-vehicle conflicts on Bozeman Pass (Intelligent Transportation System Deployment Program Project Identification Number VIL.H.24, entitled “Bozeman Pass Wildlife Channelization ITS Project”). Read the final reports here:

Evaluating Wildlife–Vehicle Collisions (WVC) and Wildlife Connectivity in the Madison Valley and Hebgen Lake Areas:  Wildlife-vehicle collisions (WVCs) along US Highway 287 (US 287) and MT 87 can create a public safety risk and a habitat connectivity issue, which has generated some public concern. However, the patterns and effects of WVCs and wildlife movements across this highway corridor have not yet been studied in depth. Evaluating land use, topography, large animal crossing patterns, and Wildlife-Vehicle Collisions (WVC) data will give MDT and other state and federal resource agencies information that can be used for developing possible mitigation strategies that may reduce risk to motorists, and better understand areas of concern with regard to connectivity. Results from this study will provide MDT with essential information to be an active collaborator in the future of wildlife conservation in the Madison Valley. Read more about this project here.

Idaho Fish and Wildlife Information System

Read more here.

Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks

A Sampling of Connectivity “Hot Spots”. Read more here.