Elk NetworkUtah Receives Funding to Build Wildlife Crossing

General | December 7, 2023

Below is a Facebook post from the Utah Department of Transportation. While the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation supported this specific project, it also provided funding support for widespread wildlife mapping efforts to help conserve and identify movement corridors in Wyoming and across the West as well as additional financial support to accelerate western big game migration corridor conservation.

Why don’t we build animal crossings everywhere? One major hurdle is funding. The cost of wildlife crossings is typically measured in the millions. But we got some exciting news on that front.

The U.S. DOT (Department of Transportation) has awarded over $5 million to help us build wildlife crossings along US-89, east of Kanab.

This area is an important wildlife habitat. The Paunsaugunt mule deer migrate across US-89 multiple times a year.

US-89 is also an important area for human travelers. It is located in the “Grand Circle” – a concentration of state parks, national parks and monuments, and other recreation areas.

During the last 5.5 years, 57 mule deer carcasses have been collected in the project area. Carcasses, wildlife migration patterns and wildlife vehicle collisions are all factors that we take into consideration when deciding where to place a structure.

We’re grateful to our partners, Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, Mule Deer Foundation, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife, and Utah Archery Association for their support on this project!

(Photo credit: Utah Department of Transportation)