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Wildlife Friendly Roads: The Impacts of Roads on Wildlife in Urban Areas and Potential Remedies

Released: 2014
Riley, SPD, JL Brown, JA Sikich, CA Schoonmaker, EE Boydston. 2014. Wildlife Friendly Roads: The Impacts of Roads on Wildlife in Urban Areas and Potential Remedies. In: McCleery, RA, CE Moorman, MN Peterson (eds). Urban Wildlife Conservation, Springer, USA. pp. 323-360. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4899-7500-3_15

Roads are one of the most important factors affecting the ability of wildlife to live and move within an urban area. Roads physically replace wildlife habitat and often reduce habitat quality nearby, fragment the remaining habitat, and cause increased mortality through vehicle collisions. Much ecological research on roads has focused on whether animals are successfully crossing roads, or if the road is a barrier to wildlife movement, gene flow, or functional connectivity. Roads can alter survival and reproduction for wildlife, even among species such as birds that cross roads easily. Here we examine the suite of potential impacts of roads on wildlife, but we focus particularly on urban settings. We report on studies, both in the literature and from our own experience, that have addressed wildlife and roads in urban landscapes. Although road ecology is a growing field of study, relatively little of this research, and relatively few mitigation projects, have been done in urban landscapes. We also draw from the available science on road impacts in rural areas when urban case studies have not fully addressed key topics.

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This product is associated with the following project:
Impacts of Human Activity and Development on Behavior, Genetics, Disease and Mortality on Bobcats and other Carnivores

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