Posts tagged: I-90
WILDLIFE — Motorists see a lot of wildlife — dead and alive — while driving I-90 over Snoqualmie Pass, and they're willing to share their sightings.
In the first-year of a motorist based wildlife monitoring program, nearly 7,000 visits were logged into the Wildlife Watch website by interested parties and 240 instances of live and dead animals were reported between North Bend and Easton.
The goal is to learn where wildlife crosses the highway so methods might be used to prevent collisions with the animals and the 28,000 vehicles traveling over the Pass each day.
The majority of live animals sighted were deer and elk, with black bears, coyotes, and numerous other species also reported.
The Washington Department of Transportation’s I-90 Snoqualmie Pass East project plans to help enhance driver safety and reconnect north-south wildlife corridors by constructing 24 wildlife crossing structures along a 15-mile stretch of highway between Hyak and Easton.
The photo at left is a visualization of an overpass planned for I-90 neer Keechelus Dam on the east side of Snoqualmie Pass. The photo above is I-90 in its current condition.
WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT — When law enforcement officers arrived around 6 a.m July 5 to deal with three moose on Interstate 90 near Liberty Lake, they were armed with guns you can buy at a toy store.
Washington state troopers blocked I-90 traffic while state Fish and Wildlife police “escorted” three yearlings out of traffic toward the Spokane River. To keep the moose moving, the officers used paintball guns.
“Two officers went at them on foot and stung them every now and then with the paintball guns,” said Capt. Mike Whorton of the Washington Fish and Wildlife Department. “Pretty soon they ran across all four lands of I-90 and out of the way of traffic.”
Whorton said one of his officers tested his own paintball gun last year for harassing and moving wildlife out of danger. The test was so successful, a local sportsmen's group has purchased paintball guns for all of the area Fish and Wildlife police, he said.
“Paintball guns can get off a lot of shots rapidly and accurately,” he said. “They are so much more effective and cost effective than the rubber bullets we had been firing out of 12-gauge shotguns. And aside from some pink paint on their rumps, the paintballs don't do any more than sting the moose.”