As a sportsman and resident of Teton County, my life is shaped by the landscape and wildlife that define our community. The elk, deer, bear, moose and other species are central to our identity and help drive our local economy. Sadly, each year over 500 animals are hit and killed on our roads. Animal collisions pose a serious threat to human safety and jeopardizes the stability of our wildlife populations. Consequently, I am a strong supporter of the Wildlife Crossing Measure on the November SPET ballot. Empowering the county to take action to protect the health of residents and wildlife alike is as ethical as it is practical.
We are learning more everyday about how wildlife utilize the landscapes we are a part of, the importance of habitat connectivity, the historic migration routes in our backyard, and the impacts of habitat fragmentation and human disturbances. Development in Wyoming has effectively interrupted the habits of migratory game species like elk, mule deer and pronghorn. As a hunter and all-around wildlife enthusiast, I have a vested interest in supporting measures that ensure safe wildlife crossings. As a Teton County resident and father, I also support this ballot measure because it will reduce potentially deadly collisions on our roads.
Across the country, we’ve seen that dedicated wildlife crossings like bridges and tunnels can significantly reduce the number of accidents on public roads. In Montana and other parts of Wyoming, wildlife crossings have reduced wildlife-vehicle collisions by almost 90%. It’s high time that Teton County made a serious commitment to protecting our citizens and our wildlife by installing underpasses and overpasses for wildlife crossings in areas of concern. Please join me and the Wyoming Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers in supporting this important measure by voting FOR Wildlife Crossings during the SPET Election on November 5th.