DON'T SPEED UP, SPEED KILLS: MAMMAL ROADKILLS ON HIGHWAY SECTIONS OF PR-445 IN THE SOUTH OF BRAZIL

Alan Deivid Pereira, Marcelo Hideki Shigaki Yabu, Iago Vinicios Geller, Carlos Rodrigo Lehn, Ana Paula Vidotto-Magnoni, Juliano André Bogoni, Mário Luís Orsi

Abstract


Animal-vehicle collisions are the main negative impact of roads on wildlife, where they cause population declines, shifts in community structure, and potential changes in species behavior. Here, we determined mammal roadkill rates and the hotspots with higher rates for medium- and large-bodied mammals on the Highway PR-445 in the state of Paraná, Brazil. We have also evaluated possible differences in the frequency of roadkills concerning species activity patterns and their feeding habits. In doing so, we monitored the PR-445 twice a week between the kilometers 1 and 76, from March 2018 to March 2019, totaling 7296 km after 96 trips. We have recorded 93 mammal roadkills belonging to 17 species, representing a rate of 0.013 individual/km/day. The Carnivora, Didelphimorphia, and Cingulata orders showed to be the most common representatives among the roadkills. Omnivores were more prone to get hit by vehicles than herbivores and carnivores. The type of mammal activity pattern was not determinant in explaining the differences in roadkill rates. Highways in Paraná are among the roads that register the highest number of vehicle collisions with vertebrates in the country. This issue, together with extensive habitat loss and fragmentation, increases the threats to the relictual fauna. Our results indicate that the regions with the highest incidence of mammal roadkills on PR-445 are those close to stretches over rivers and with remnants of native vegetation. Thus, we emphasize that more comprehensive measures (e.g., wildlife passages and speed reducers) are essential to mitigate the impact of roads on wildlife.


Keywords


activity period; animal-vehicle collisions; diversity loss; conservation; species diet

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References


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