Road-kill of Mammals in Nova Scotia

David Fudge, Bill Freedman, Michael Crowell, Tony Nette, Vince Power


We examined road mortality of wild mammals in Nova Scotia using data from (a) five years of province-wide data on wildlife collisions involving larger mammals, and (b) 20 months of observations of smaller mammals along a 160-km route near Halifax. An average of 2079 White-tailed Deer was reported killed annually on highways during 1999 through 2003, along with 14 Moose and 33 Black Bear. Female White-tailed Deer were more likely to be road-killed than males (by a factor of 1.8), yearlings more so than older animals, and there were peaks of mortality in the late spring and late autumn. The road-kill of smaller mammals was highest in the summer and least in the winter, and the most frequent mortalities were of Raccoon (28% of observations), Porcupine (27%), Skunk (17%), Snowshoe Hare (6%), Coyote (4%), and Groundhog (3%). The standardized kill-rate (number/100 km) was highest on a 100-series highway compared to trunk highways or urban streets, but the rate standardized to vehicle density was highest on trunk highways.


White-tailed Deer; Odocoileus virginianus; Moose; Alces alces; Black Bear; Ursus americanus; Raccoon; Procyon lotor; Porcupine; Erethizon dorsatum; Skunk; Mephitus mephitis; Snowshoe Hare; Lepus americanus; Coyote; Canis latrans; road-kill; Nova Scotia

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