Fencing combined with wildlife over and underpasses in Banff National Park have reduced wildlife-vehicle collisions by 80%. Image: Karsten Heuer
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“The 40+ wildlife crossings built on U.S. Highway 93 on the Flathead Reservation of western Montana is the largest highway mitigation effort in the U.S. Support from Y2Y has helped share the successes (and engaging wildlife photos) of the U.S. 93 monitoring and science program.”


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(Watch the Highway Wilding 23-minute documentary to learn more about the efforts Y2Y and its partners are taking to make our roads safer for people and animals.)


Bear running across road. Image: Kent Nelson
Wildlife must navigate across busy roads to continue their journey. Image: Kent Nelson
How did the grizzly bear, or the pronghorn, or the salamander cross the road safely? That is a question that Y2Y asks.


Roads, and in particular highways, as well as trains, are significant barriers to wildlife movement throughout the Yellowstone to Yukon region. Even in protected areas like Banff, Yoho and Kootenay national parks wildlife collisions on roads are an issue. In 2012, 12 grizzly bears were struck in the parks by motorists on roads with no form of wildlife-crossing structures. Another four were killed by trains. 2014 saw another two grizzlies taken out by the train.These barriers not only threaten the lives of people, but if wildlife cannot cross roads and connect to other populations it limits their genetic diversity, which will lead to long-term population decline.


Banff Overpass. Image Josh Whetzel
Wildlife structures through Banff National Park have reduced wildlife-vehicle collisions by 80%. Image: Josh Whetzel
Many measures to keep wildlife and people moving safely have had extraordinary results. Research conducted on fencing, as well as the wildlife over- and underpasses, built on Canada’s Trans-Canada Highway through Banff National Park shows that these structures have reduced wildlife-vehicle collisions in the park by 80 per cent. Additionally, these structures have enabled more than 140,000 animal crossings, which have proven to promote gene flow.

Other measures, such as movable remotely-triggered wildlife signs, are effective at alerting drivers to slow down to the presence of wildlife. This measure is highly effective for roads that are lined with private dwellings and drive-ways, which makes adding fencing and crossing structures impractical. These are just a few examples of many mitigation options.


As of 2013, some 1,000 miles (1,600 km) of highways across Alberta, Idaho, Montana and Wyoming are or are in the process of being modified to be safer for both wildlife and people thanks to the work of Y2Y and its partners. Despite this, there are thousands of miles of highway and railway line that threaten both people and wildlife. Y2Y is focused on tackling each of these barriers, one at a time.

Highway Projects Oct 3, 2016



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Alberta Environment and Parks, Alberta Transportation, American Wildlands, Annatum Ecological Consulting, BC Hydro Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program, BC Conservation Foundation, Bridger Teton National Forest, Caribou Targhee National Forest, Miistakis , Center for Large Landscape Conservation, Great Northern Environmental Stewardship Area, Greater Yellowstone Coalition, Idaho Department of Fish and Game, Idaho Master Naturalists, Jackson Hole Conservation Alliance,  Jackson Hole Wildlife Foundation, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Peoples’ Way Partnership, Road Watch in the Pass, The Nature Conservation, The Teton Conservation District,  University of Northern BC, Valhalla Wilderness Society, Volker Stevin, Western Transportation Institute and The Wildlife Conservation Society. 

Related Information:

Fencing and Wildlife Crossing Structures

Banff Wildlife Crossing Structures

Central Canadian Rocky Mountains

Cabinet-Purcell Mountain Corridor

Crown of the Continent


GET THE LATEST: Transportation News

Wildlife overpass design to go ahead

— Posted on Apr 09, 2018 11:45 AM in: Y2Y in the News
Wildlife overpass design to go ahead

The province has dollars to hire a consultant to do the design and cost benefit analysis of a crossing between Highway 1X and Lac Des Arcs. | Rocky Mountain Outlook, Apr. 5, 2018

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Conservationists push for new wildlife overpass

— Posted on Mar 15, 2018 04:11 PM in: Y2Y in the News
Conservationists push for new wildlife overpass

Y2Y says now is the time to urge the Alberta government to invest in green infrastructure in the 2018 provincial budget. | Rocky Mountain Outlook, Mar. 15, 2018

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Making highways safer with your help

— Posted on Nov 16, 2017 06:07 PM in: Updates from the Field
Making highways safer with your help

A smartphone app makes reporting wildlife sightings near roads and highways easier than ever.

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Wildlife overpasses examined near Island Park

— Posted on Sep 19, 2017 07:30 AM in: Y2Y in the News
Wildlife overpasses examined near Island Park

An area near Yellowstone National Park is looking at ways to make roads safer for drivers and wildlife. | Idaho Falls Post Register, Sept. 18, 2017

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Y2Y calls for more fencing along Trans-Canada Highway through Bow Valley corridor

— Posted on Mar 02, 2017 08:10 AM in: Y2Y in the News
Y2Y calls for more fencing along Trans-Canada Highway through Bow Valley corridor

Hoping to reduce the number of crashes between vehicles and animals along the Highway 1 in the Bow Valley, the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative is asking the province to erect more fencing and other anti-collision measures.

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