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Article

J Vet Clin 2014; 31(4): 282-287

https://doi.org/10.17555/ksvc.2014.08.31.4.282

Published online August 30, 2014

Spatial and Temporal Patterns on Wildlife Road-kills on Highway in Korea

Gyoungju Lee1, Jong-Hoon Tak2, Son-Il Pak3

*Department of Urban Engineering, Korea National University of Transportation, Chungju 380-702, Korea
**Daewangpangyo-ro, Sujeong-gu, Seongnam-si, Korea Expressway Corporation, Gyeonggi-do 461-703, Korea
***College of Veterinary Medicine and Institute of Veterinary Science, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon 200-701, Korea

Copyright © The Korean Society of Veterinary Clinics.

Abstract

The negative impacts of roads on wildlife mortality have been well documented, and one of the most significant impact is wildlife-vehicle collisions (WVCs) in most countries throughout the world. While road impacts on wildlife are a truly global concern with a large socio-economic cost, few researches in Korea have been quantified road-kill occurrence on highways or identified extensively seasonal and geographic patterns of this phenomenon. Therefore, we analyzed highway mortality of wild mammals in Korea using database from five years of nation-wide data on WVCs, and estimated road-kill density by standardizing on per km and per $10^3$ vehicle basis. During 2008 through 2012, a total of 10,940 wildlifes were reported killed on highways, with an average of 2,188 cases per year. There were 2,376 road-kills in 2012, and this equates to 0.01 road-kills per km per week or one road-kill every 88.5 km per week. For time of day, road-kills occurred more frequently in the early morning (05:00-08:00, 38.3%), and day of week did not have a significant influence in any individual year. The road-kill was highest in the spring (March- May, 33.0%) and least in the winter (December-February, 16.1%), and the most frequently killed native species were of Korean water deer (79.7%), raccoon dog (12.7%), Korean hare (3.1%), and leopard cat (1.2%). The overall standardized kill-rate (number/10 km/1,000 vehicles/month) in 2012 was 0.057 with highest on Dangjinyeongdeok highway (0.476), followed by Yeongdong (0.274), Sooncheonwanju (0.233), Iksanpohang (0.187), and Joongang (0.150). This study highlights that the frequency of WVCs are prevalent throughout the highways in Korea. Further work is needed to determine whether such a level of mortality is sustainable from an ecological point of view.

Keywords: road-kill, mortality, highway, wild mammals

Article

J Vet Clin 2014; 31(4): 282-287

Published online August 30, 2014 https://doi.org/10.17555/ksvc.2014.08.31.4.282

Copyright © The Korean Society of Veterinary Clinics.

Spatial and Temporal Patterns on Wildlife Road-kills on Highway in Korea

Gyoungju Lee1, Jong-Hoon Tak2, Son-Il Pak3

*Department of Urban Engineering, Korea National University of Transportation, Chungju 380-702, Korea
**Daewangpangyo-ro, Sujeong-gu, Seongnam-si, Korea Expressway Corporation, Gyeonggi-do 461-703, Korea
***College of Veterinary Medicine and Institute of Veterinary Science, Kangwon National University, Chuncheon 200-701, Korea

Abstract

The negative impacts of roads on wildlife mortality have been well documented, and one of the most significant impact is wildlife-vehicle collisions (WVCs) in most countries throughout the world. While road impacts on wildlife are a truly global concern with a large socio-economic cost, few researches in Korea have been quantified road-kill occurrence on highways or identified extensively seasonal and geographic patterns of this phenomenon. Therefore, we analyzed highway mortality of wild mammals in Korea using database from five years of nation-wide data on WVCs, and estimated road-kill density by standardizing on per km and per $10^3$ vehicle basis. During 2008 through 2012, a total of 10,940 wildlifes were reported killed on highways, with an average of 2,188 cases per year. There were 2,376 road-kills in 2012, and this equates to 0.01 road-kills per km per week or one road-kill every 88.5 km per week. For time of day, road-kills occurred more frequently in the early morning (05:00-08:00, 38.3%), and day of week did not have a significant influence in any individual year. The road-kill was highest in the spring (March- May, 33.0%) and least in the winter (December-February, 16.1%), and the most frequently killed native species were of Korean water deer (79.7%), raccoon dog (12.7%), Korean hare (3.1%), and leopard cat (1.2%). The overall standardized kill-rate (number/10 km/1,000 vehicles/month) in 2012 was 0.057 with highest on Dangjinyeongdeok highway (0.476), followed by Yeongdong (0.274), Sooncheonwanju (0.233), Iksanpohang (0.187), and Joongang (0.150). This study highlights that the frequency of WVCs are prevalent throughout the highways in Korea. Further work is needed to determine whether such a level of mortality is sustainable from an ecological point of view.

Keywords: road-kill, mortality, highway, wild mammals