Visualizing Obstacles in Big Game Migration Corridors
March 2019 - December 2021
- Muley Fanatic Foundation
Research shows that elk encounter many obstacles during their migrations. Barriers like fences and roads can be deadly for elk, and also threaten their access to habitat, potentially leading to decreased herd health and population abundance. However, migrating elk face these obstacles mostly out of public view, because their corridors are in-between the hunting areas and winter range where the general public are most likely to spot them. Trail cameras and migration maps can effectively communicate to the public the challenges elk face in crossing highways, subdivisions, and other barriers. This web-based film project will show elk facing barriers, and how people in different parts of the state are using or could use migration data to address them. We will focus on groups that are using migration data to retrofit fences to make them more wildlife friendly, perhaps in places like Jackson Hole, the Green River Basin, or Park County. The film will also attempt to show how elk navigate road crossings identified for the Priority Opportunity List of the Wyoming Wildlife Roadways Initiative. This project is a collaboration of researchers across multiple agencies and includes the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and the Muley Fanatic Foundation.