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Is it more efficient to build a species-specific or a more general wildlife overpass?

Wesselink, K.W. (2016) Is it more efficient to build a species-specific or a more general wildlife overpass? Bachelor's Thesis, Biology.

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In the three years after construction, only five individuals have used a bridge for squirrels in The Hague. That raises the question if these species-specific wildlife overpasses are worth the money to build them. This thesis focuses on the behaviour of several mammal species in relation to wildlife overpasses. There are animals that are not afraid of roads and the only reason to build crossings for them is to avoid animal-vehicle collisions. Some animals stay near linear corridors for excellent living conditions or because they are aware that prey make use of the same corridors. Most mammals make use of wildlife crossings at night most likely because there are fewer vehicles and less noise. Studies suggest that there are a few crossing individuals needed to maintain gene flow between populations. To get these few individuals it’s probably not a good idea to build bridges (like the one in The Hague) that can only be used by one species, but more research needs to be done. When building or expanding a road there are a few requirements to keep in mind to mitigate habitat fragmentation. There are different types of over- and underpasses, which are aimed at different species. Larger species need a wider overpass. Overpasses can’t elevate too steeply because crossing animals must be able to see the other side of the bridge. Local studies are preferred to find the most suitable crossing, since there is no single best solution to mitigate habitat fragmentation. Finally I could conclude that most Dutch overpasses are around bit the suggested size.

Item Type: Thesis (Bachelor's Thesis)
Degree programme: Biology
Thesis type: Bachelor's Thesis
Language: English
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 08:11
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2018 08:11

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