Road mortality of Carnivores (Mammalia, Carnivora) in Belarus
Global road infrastructure is expanding rapidly, and its threats to wildlife populations is increasing worldwide. We determined the species composition of carnivores killed on roads in Belarus. Seasonal dynamics and regional patterns of mortality rates were estimated. From July 2007 to august 2018, we traveled a total of 52,159 km, and recorded 368 carnivore road-kills representing 11 species (73 % of the study area checklist). Average mortality rate equaled 7.25 road-killed individuals per 1000 km/day surveyed across all roads. The most common species we encountered were the domestic cat Felis silvestris catus Linnaeus, 1758 (53.3 %, n=196), common dog Canis lupus familiaris Linnaeus, 1758 (21.4 %, n=78), and red fox Vulpes vulpes Linnaeus, 1758 (14.7 %, n=54). Our results confirmed that traffic volume and time of the year strongly influence frequency of road-kills, along that, we did not reveal significant impacts of road mortality on populations of carnivores in Belarus.
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