What is the CROS System?
CROS is the largest system of its kind in the US, combining agency and volunteer-collected carcass data. The data/metadata are compliant with international data management standards and CROS data have been used by transportation/wildlife agency planners and biologists, academic scientists, and consultants. The accuracy of species identification has been measured to be ~97% and median locational accuracy is ~13 m. You can read more about the technical and scientific aspects of CROS here: http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fevo.2017.00089/full
What is the system designed to do?
This web system can be used to record observations from roadkill-reporters out in the field who come across identifiable road-killed wildlife. Observation details include type of animal and/or species found, where the road-kill was located, when it was found, pictures of the road-kill, and any additional details about road or traffic conditions. The system then displays a summary of this information for different animal groups across the state.
Why is this information useful?
Information about where wildlife vehicle collisions occur, what animals are involved, on what roads collisions are frequent, and other data can help inform policy, management, and financial investment in reducing roadkill. We share data with collaborators and agency-users and use the data ourselves to study how and why roadkill occurs and what we can do to reduce it.
Who will use the information?
We share data with agency, academic, consultant, and NGO staff about once per week (upon request). We are also a research organization, so we also use the data to understand the ecological, wildlife behavior, and transportation contributions to this problem. This includes GIS and statistical modeling to predict roadkill hotspots (https://natureconservation.pensoft.net/article/4438/), to develop wildlife connectivity maps (https://roadecology.ucdavis.edu/research/projects/california-connectivity-design), to measure the contributing factors to roadkill, to quantify impacts, and to estimate benefits of different remedial actions.