Wildlife mirrors and reflectors have been developed based on the concept that the lights from approaching cars reflect in the mirrors or reflectors and then alert wildlife, particularly deer species. The animals are believed to respond to the reflected light by moving off and away from the road. Mirrors simply reflect the light whereas reflectors come in different colors, most commonly red, white, or yellow. Most reflectors are stationary whereas others move in the wind and have the light reflect at varying angles. Unfortunately mirrors and reflectors do not appear to be effective in reducing wildlife-vehicle collisions. Inconsistent and limited effectiveness or the complete lack of effectiveness in reducing collisions is often said to be the result of poor or wrong installation and poor or no maintenance. However, a behavioral study found that deer do not move any further away from the road or right of way as a result of the presence of a certain type of reflector. Thus there appears no evidence for the mechanism or underlying concept that would make mirrors or reflectors result in fewer collisions with deer. The popularity of mirrors and reflectors appears mostly based on their relatively low cost and their high visibility to the public rather than a substantial reduction in collisions with large animals. Should one nonetheless decide to implement this type of mitigation measure it is important to have the installation and maintenance schedule approved by the manufacturer. In addition, it is important to then monitor the effectiveness based on well thought out research plan that not only includes recording collisions in road sections with the mirrors or reflectors but that also monitors road sections that did not have mirrors or reflectors installed. Furthermore it is helpful to monitor the relative population size of the target species in the areas concerned.
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. All content © 2010-2012Marcel Huijser
Category:Architecture and Structures
Keywords:Itek, Swareflex, WEBU, Wildlife mirrors, cars, deer, deer reflectors, headlights, image, lights, mirrors, mitigation measures, photo, photograph, red, reflectors, traffic, vehicles, white, wildlife reflectors, wildreflector, wildspiegel, yellow
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