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Washington State Department of Transportation’s New Animal Overpass Is Already Saving Wildlife

Image via iStock.com/GarysFRP

The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) has been working to increase animal safety through the construction of wildlife overpasses and underpasses on busy highways.

According to the Spokesman-Review, WSDOT has put into motion a billion-dollar project to construct 20 animal crossings on the busy I-90 interstate to help animals safely follow their natural migration patterns.

Smithsonian Magazine explains that the decision to construct underpasses and overpasses is based on studies that shows that different animals have different crossing preferences, so providing options is key. The article provides an example explaining, “One study even found that male bears tended to use underpasses, while females and cubs stayed on top.”

On the Washington State DOT Twitter, they have made an exciting announcement that the first bridge of this project—situated just east of Snoqualmie Pass—has been constructed and has already had its first user.

The coyote can be seen prancing across the bridge and making it to the other side safe and sound.

The bridge will still need fencing to create a noise buffer for car traffic, but it is exciting to see that the wildlife of Washington has already started to utilize these safer crossing passages.

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