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Conference paper, 2004

E4:ans barriärpåverkan på vintervandrande älg i Höga Kusten området

Seiler, Andreas; Grängstedt, Per; Ringaby, Eric; Göran, Cederlund


The new highway E4 along the Baltic coast of Sweden cuts through winter migration routes for moose (Alces alces). To counteract barrier effects of the fenced highway and increase traffic safety, two moose underpasses have been constructed in addition to conventional bridges and viaducts. As the road was opened for traffic, a follow-up study was initiated to evaluate the amplitude of the barrier effect and efficacy of the counteractive measures. Migratory movements were studied on individually marked moose; moose tracks were mapped on snow and counted on sand layer to reveal local movements along the road and through the underpasses. Changes in local moose density were indexed be pellet group counts and related to browsing damages to young forest stands and available forage. The majority (88%) of marked and recaptured moose had moved farther than the diameter of an average home range (5 km) and were thus classified as migrants. During winter, migrating moose were held up in their way to their former winter ranges near the coast and accumulated in productive areas west of the highway. Browsing damages consequently increased from 5% to over 40% during 1998 to 2000. Underpasses and viaducts were used only occasionally by moose (about 1.6 tracks per month) and there was no seasonal or directional difference in usage. This suggests that primarily resident moose were utilizing underpasses. In addition, snow tracking revealed that many moose were reluctant to enter the underpasses and instead preferred to cross the fenced road. We conclude that the counteractive measures have not been effective in reducing barrier effects on migratory moose. We discuss possible consequences to moose management and make recommendations for future infrastructure planning in the region


moose; monitoring; mitigation measure; fauna passage; effectiveness; barrier effect; EIA

Published in


Habitat fragmentation due to transport infrastructure

Authors' information

Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Conservation Biology
Grängstedt, Per
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Conservation Biology
Ringaby, Eric
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Conservation Biology
Göran, Cederlund

UKÄ Subject classification

Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use

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