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Animal detection systems or wildlife warning systems are designed to detect large animals that are on or near the road. Once a large animal has been detected, warning signs are activated that urge drivers to slow down or be more alert. There are different types of animal detection systems, including break-the-beam systems and area cover systems. Break-the-beam systems have a transmitter that transmits a signal to a receiver. When an animal's body blocks or reduces the signal, the warning signs are activated. The signal type may be microwave radio signals, infrared light, or laser. Another system type detects animals within a certain range of the sensor. The signals may include microwave radio signals or infrared light. Other systems use a buried cable that detects changes in an electromagnetic field as the animals walk over the cable, or they may use seismic sensors that record vibrations in the ground as large animals approach. Finally, radio collars may be placed on individual animals, and when these animals come within range of receivers placed in the right of way, warning signs are activated. Different systems types have their own pros and cons. A major advantage of animal detection systems over wildlife underpasses and overpasses in combination with wildlife fencing is that they can be installed without major road reconstruction. If animal detection systems are installed over relatively great road length, the animals can cross anywhere and they can also change where they cross the road. This is in contrast to wildlife underpasses and overpasses which only allow wildlife to cross at particular locations, and these locations are fixed. However, small animal species are not detected by animal detection systems, so smaller species do not benefit. More importantly, animal detection systems may go through a period where technological issues have to be identified and addressed. That is why they should be considered experimental at this time. Nonetheless, collisions with large animals have been reduced by 58-99% on some locations using these systems. Much needs to be learned still about what type of warning signs should be presented to drivers and whether or not the warning signs should be associated with a reduction in the maximum or advisory speed limit. Note that animal detection systems may also be combined with wildlife fencing. they can be installed at a gap in the fence or at a fence end.

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Animal detection system warning sign, Yellowstone National Park, Montana, USAActivated warning sign "wildlife detected" of animal detection system, Hwy 160, near Durango, Colorado, USAAnimal detection system at night, Harderwijk, The NetherlandsAnimal detection system at night, Harderwijk, The NetherlandsAnimal detection system at night, Harderwijk, The NetherlandsAnimal detection system at night, Harderwijk, The NetherlandsAnimal detection system at night, Harderwijk, The NetherlandsAnimal detection system at night, Harderwijk, The NetherlandsAnimal detection system at night, Harderwijk, The NetherlandsAnimal detection system at night, Harderwijk, The Netherlands

Categories & Keywords
Category:Architecture and Structures
Subcategory:Roads
Subcategory Detail:
Keywords:alert, alertness, animal detection systems, area cover systems, break-the-beam, deer, detection, detection systems, drivers, elk, moose, pronghorn, receiver, safe crossing opportunity, sensor, speed, systems, transmitter, warning systems, wildlife, wildlife detection systems, wildlife warning systems, wildwaarschuwingssysteem