Moose Seen on the Hwy 9 Overpass!
Within weeks of the shut-down of the first construction season of the CO State Hwy 9 Safety Project, wildlife were documented using the completed crossing structures, including the first wildlife overpass in the state. The pictures all showed mule-deer, which was no surprise to researchers as the majority of wildlife mortalities previously documented were mule deer. The crossings, however, were designed to accommodate all wildlife species, large and small, so everyone was hoping to catch other animals like elk or even small mammals using the crossings as well.
These hopes were vindicated yesterday, as monitoring cameras caught a moose using the overpass in the late afternoon. The animal was also spotted by several passing motorists, who were just as excited to see the animal live as researchers were to see it on camera.
The second construction season will begin soon in the coming weeks, and continued monitoring will provide additional evidence for how well the crossing structures, and the overall project, will impact wildlife movements and vehicle-wildlife collisions in the long-term.