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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Coyote crosses I-90 using new animal overpass east of Snoqualmie Pass

Elk cross under I-90 near Gold Creek on May 9, 2018. (Conservation Northwest / Courtesy)

The Washington Department of Transportation captured video of a coyote crossing over I-90, east of Snoqualmie Pass, early Wednesday morning.

The footage is the first video documentation of animals using the new overpass. The I-90 Wildlife Watch Facebook group posted the video to their page today.

The wildlife crossing was unveiled in late September and is part of a wider effort to connect habitats fragmented by the state’s busiest road.

That effort includes the crossing and six undercrossings which allow wildlife to travel north to south in the Cascades.

The Washington projects are modeled after an underpass and overpass in Banff National Park, which crosses over the Trans-Canada Highway.

Since that overpass opened 20 years ago, it’s estimated that 152,000 animals have crossed safely.

Freeways and roads have long disrupted natural animal migration paths, leading to increased mortality and fragmenting habitats.

The I-90 project is the first of its kind in Washington to try and balance human transportation needs with wildlife habitats.

Photos of animals using the underpasses are available online.