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Various animals in a drainage pipe
December 21, 2011 3:02 AM   Subscribe

Various animals crossing a drainage pipe at night. Some background.
posted by twoleftfeet (29 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
even the five-lined skink likes to use the concrete entrance for basking and foraging.

A skink sounds like a Dr. Seuss animal, but it's just an ordinary lizard.

I like that one of the animals caught on camera is someone on a bicycle, apparently just skinking under the road like everyone else.
posted by three blind mice at 3:43 AM on December 21, 2011


Modern motorway construction in Europe - at least if it receives EU funding - is required to provision local wildlife with crossings according to some complicated criteria. New motorways will have large overhead animal crossings for deer and underground culverts for smaller rodents or reptiles, and I even know of one example of an overhead passage for bats. Every new motorway project is required to map out local wildlife movement pattern before construction. I was surprised that the US study made it sound like this is not done there.
posted by Catfry at 3:56 AM on December 21, 2011 [3 favorites]


an overhead passage for bats

They couldn't just fly across the road like the other winged creatures? What would this EU-mandated overhead bat passage (moss-covered three-handled family gradunza) look like?

Or do you mean they were required to build a roost under a bridge?
posted by pracowity at 4:03 AM on December 21, 2011


A skink sounds like a Dr. Seuss animal

From a forest down deep in the land of Gazink
Came a slithering, dithering creature, the Skink!
He skinked cross the valley, he skinked cross the sky
for the Skink could go this way and that, and could fly!
He burrowed and furrowed and churned up the ground,
then rolled cross the fields, without making a sound.
Then one day he said: do you know what I think?
I think I'll go back to the land of Gazink!
From Gazinkian rivers I now want to drink!
And that was the last we all saw of the Skink.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:03 AM on December 21, 2011 [12 favorites]


They couldn't just fly across the road like the other winged creatures? What would this EU-mandated overhead bat passage (moss-covered three-handled family gradunza) look like?

I'll try to find a picture. The problem is they have a low flight path between their dwellings and feeding areas. The passage is a tunnel made of loose netting suspended over the roadway if I remember right.
posted by Catfry at 4:31 AM on December 21, 2011


Aye an' a bit of Mackeral settler rack and ruin ran it doon by the haim, 'ma place. Well I slapped me and I slapped it doon in the side and I cried, cried, cried.

The fear a fallen down taken never back the raize and then Craig Marion, get out wi' ye Claymore out mi pocket a' ran doon, doon the middin stain picking the fiery horde that was fallen around ma feet. Never he cried, never shall it ye get me alive ye rotten hound of the burnie crew. Well I snatched fer the blade. O my Claymore cut and thrust and I fell doon before him round his feet.

Aye! A roar he cried frae the bottom of his heart that I would nay fall but as dead, dead as 'a can be by his feet; de ya ken?

...and the wind cried Mary.
Pink Floyd, Several Species of Small Furry Animals Gathered Together in a Cave and Grooving With a Pict.
posted by scalefree at 4:40 AM on December 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I like how the deer in the first photo looks totally guilty, like he didn't realize there were security cameras here, man!
posted by xingcat at 4:49 AM on December 21, 2011


Here's the bat passage being installed. Here's a simple explanation... in polish
posted by Catfry at 5:04 AM on December 21, 2011


All species of bats are protected under UK law and this implies consideration of their movements and roosts during construction. 'Nature Conservation Advice In Relation To Bats' sets out issues, and potential mitigating responses to minimise harmful impacts on bats. This includes the use of 'bridges' to allow safer passage (p35), essentially, the goal is to have a continuous passage of foliage which it is hoped the bat will choose preferentially, and this can be enhanced by use of roadlighting to channel the bats to the bridge. Culverts are recommended for low flying species, as in this project in Wales.
posted by biffa at 5:47 AM on December 21, 2011


I am glad to hear that the EU requires animal passage considerations with roads; I wish that was the case here. I see a lot of smaller animals hit in areas where they try to cross, but hit the unbroken concrete barrier in the median and have to turn around and go back.
posted by Forktine at 6:18 AM on December 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm all for bat bridges and the like. I carry toads and snails across the road when I find them venturing out on to the asphalt.

Of course, snails must find it frustrating (if a creature with no actual brain can be said to feel frustrated) if all they really want is just to sun themselves on the asphalt and not be picked up and plunked into the grass on the other side. But snails don't know about cars.
posted by pracowity at 6:29 AM on December 21, 2011


Here's a simple explanation... in polish

Rushed translation (starting from lower left, clockwise):

Effective protection
Bats die on the roads. These are often young individuals that just started learning the terrain layout and right behavior. These young, inexperienced individuals sometimes fly lower and can be hit by vehicles. Thanks to the gate passages there were no dead bats found on this part of S3 expressway yet.

Echolocation
The passages over the S3 expressway were designed in such a way as to make the bats fly over them using echolocation

Safe flight path
The net stretched over the gate structure constitutes a path over which the animals fly. The chosen mesh size and borders width ensure that the bats detect the obstacle immediately and increase the flight altitude
posted by hat_eater at 6:47 AM on December 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


Here's a simple explanation... in polish

I'm glad to see that the bats from Intellivision's Night Stalker are still finding work!
posted by orme at 6:52 AM on December 21, 2011


There are otters in that gallery. SOLD. Thank you for this excellent post, twoleftfeet.
posted by Inspector.Gadget at 7:26 AM on December 21, 2011


Banff...A Wild Year
posted by jimmythefish at 7:29 AM on December 21, 2011 [6 favorites]


jimmythefish -- i already miss the back country... can't wait for spring and summer.. thanks for the vid
posted by 12bits at 7:55 AM on December 21, 2011


New motorways will have large overhead animal crossings for deer and underground culverts for smaller rodents or reptiles,

Oh I'd just about be in heaven if I was driving down the road, looked up at an overpass, and saw a deer looking down at me.
posted by JHarris at 7:55 AM on December 21, 2011


This is how they look like, although the ones I'm familiar with have a screen along the overhead path so the animals cannot see and be disturbed by the cars.
posted by Catfry at 8:03 AM on December 21, 2011 [4 favorites]


Honestly, jimmythefish, I feel like that video deserves an FPP on its own. I thought it was crazy interesting, particularly somewhere around 3:30 where the cougar comes through close on the heels of that goat (?) herd. And I was glad we finally saw a substantial number of wolves near the end.
posted by six-or-six-thirty at 9:15 AM on December 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Europe.. Every new motorway project is required to map out local wildlife movement pattern before construction.

A recent major highway build in Maryland called the ICC can serve as the latest/greatest example of best practices in the USA. 15% of the cost of the highway went to environmental concerns, including "44 bridges and culverts (in addition to the bridges at major stream crossings) to provide safe passage for deer and small mammals."

Of course this is new highway construction which is nothing compared to existing old highways which did not take wildlife into consideration other than a chain-link fence.
posted by stbalbach at 9:48 AM on December 21, 2011


Thanks, jimmythefish for the Banff footage. Banff to Jasper is one of my favorite places on earth; my wife and I got married on a mountain in Jasper.

Banff actually grew up directly in the path of wolf migration routes, and they have quite successfully taken the lead on animal over- and underpasses. They've discovered that certain animals like going over and certain animals like going under.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 9:55 AM on December 21, 2011


I was a little worried about that bear who ate the dead thing that had been lying out in the sun all week and was picked at by other animals. Poor unfortunate bears with no access to askme. I bet he was gassy all day.
posted by elizardbits at 10:07 AM on December 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


"Let us do justice to the skink
Who isn't what so many think.
On consultation with a wizard
I find the skink a kind of lizard.
Since he is not a printer's whim,
Don't sniff and back away from him,
Or you may be adjudged too drunk
To tell a lizard from a skunk."
The Skink - Ogden Nash
posted by SPrintF at 10:16 AM on December 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I loved the inclusion of teenagers. As someone who occasionally spent time in drainpipes as a youth, I can assure you, it is good times. Creepy, scary, and you get to feel like you're breaking a rule. Exactly what rule, I'm not too sure. Maybe "No kids in the drainpipes"? Plus, I saw a fox in one once which of course led me to sit in the same pipe every day for a week hoping to repeat the experience. I dig these photos.
posted by troublewithwolves at 10:23 AM on December 21, 2011


These photos are great and that Banff movie is excellent. I lived in Maryland for years and while I always suspected there were otters, now I have proof. I wish they had the locations of each culvert marked, though.
posted by mygothlaundry at 10:41 AM on December 21, 2011


This is generally required in the US btw.
posted by fshgrl at 10:45 AM on December 21, 2011


Consider the humble skink
which, many scientists think,
might be the missing link
between a skunk and a mink
possessing both mighty stink
and fur as black as ink.
posted by hat_eater at 10:52 AM on December 21, 2011


And I admit that when I clicked on the This is how they look like link, I half expected to see one. Well maybe hoped against reason would be a better description.
posted by hat_eater at 10:56 AM on December 21, 2011


There's an NFB "interactive documentary" in the works called bear 71. I think it pulls from the same pool of Banff footage Jimmythefish linked to.
posted by RobotHero at 1:30 PM on December 21, 2011


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