Project Roadkill (Austria)

Habitat fragmentation by roads is a severe impact for many animal species, particularly for those with high mobility or seasonal migration behaviour, such as mammals or amphibians. As a consequence, roadkill is one of the main reasons for the decrease of populations of several animal groups. In Austria, official data of roadkills are only available for huntable wildlife. In the year 2012, amongst others 24852 European hare, 36865 Roe deer, 1414 European badger were killed on roads. However, there are no data available on the effects of roads on non-huntable wildlife or red list species such as European hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus) or European green toad (Bufo viridis). In this project we investigate among other factors whether (I) the surrounding landscape influences number of species and individuals killed on roads and (II) wheather conditions affect the number of roadkills. To answer these research questions we launched a citizen science project where participants report roadkill findings via smartphone app or an online form ( The data entry includes inter alia coordinates of the roadkill location, taxonomic information of the killed animals, information about participants behaviour and if possible an image of the roadkill. The handling of the app is very easy, hence enabling its integration in teaching at schools or universities in order to connect students with both science and nature conservation issues.  Besides answering our research questions findings of this project also allow to locate dangerous spots for animals and could help to set up nature conservation actions.

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