In its efforts to learn how to reduce deer-vehicle collisions along I-280, the California Department of Fish and Game (DFG) and UC Davis will embark upon a study that will involve capturing 15 deer near the highway.
The California Highway Patrol (CHP) is informing motorists that the study that will take place beginning December 2.
The CalTrans-funded project, which is being carried out by researchers at UC Davis, will study the movement and activity of deer in the area for an 18-month period.
DFG and UC Davis researchers will capture the deer and fit them with radio collars to track their movements and better understand how to keep deer from crossing the highway.
Due to the nature of the study, the deer captures must be conducted relatively close to I-280. According to the CHP, motorists may see a DFG vehicle pulled over on the freeway (to check nearby traps) or possibly witness dart gunning in action on a nearby road.
Upon completion of the study, researchers will submit a recommended action plan to CalTrans.
Capture dates will be December 2-December 11, 2011. During that time 15 deer will be captured using tranquilizer dart guns and walk-in net traps. The collars will automatically drop off the animals approximately six months later, and another set of 15 deer will then be collared.
All captures will be conducted from specially marked California Department of Fish and Game vehicles, but at a glance the dart guns may look like rifles, and the CHP does not want to alarm motorists.
For more information on the study, contact Clara Laursen or Rose Isarose at 280Connectivity@gmail.com.
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