Roadkill

I'm very sad and disturbed to report that I saw 46 dead animals on South Bay roadways today (2018-01-15). This is twice as many dead animals in one day as I observed in the whole of 2017.

42 (yes, forty-two!!) Pacific Newts
3 raccoons
1 striped skunk

The raccoons were killed on Highway 17 in Los Gatos. The skunk was on Hwy 237 in Sunnyvale.

The 42 newts were killed on Alma Bridge Rd. between the Limekiln and Priest Rock trailheads (~ half a mile). Many were bloody with guts oozing out, which was really quite traumatizing to see. I only photographed 2 of the 42 to post on iNat. I saw 11 dead newts on this same section of road back in November 2017 (that's 53 dead newts within a 3-month period, but more accurately during 2 visits to Sierra Azul) on a very short section of roadway (half a mile):

https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/truthseqr?utf8=%E2%9C%93&q=newt%2C+roadkill&search_on=&quality_grade=any&reviewed=&geoprivacy=&identifications=any&captive=&place_id=&swlat=&swlng=&nelat=&nelng=&taxon_name=&taxon_id=&day=&month=&year=2017&order_by=observations.id&order=desc&rank=&hrank=&lrank=&taxon_ids%5B%5D=&d1=&d2=&created_on=&site=&tdate=&list_id=&filters_open=true&view=map

Here are my roadkill sightings for 2017:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/truthseqr?utf8=%E2%9C%93&q=roadkill&search_on=&quality_grade=any&reviewed=&geoprivacy=&identifications=any&captive=&place_id=&swlat=&swlng=&nelat=&nelng=&taxon_name=&taxon_id=&day=&month=&year=2017&order_by=observations.id&order=desc&rank=&hrank=&lrank=&taxon_ids%5B%5D=&d1=&d2=&created_on=&site=&tdate=&list_id=&filters_open=true&view=map

Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District is working along with other authorities to create safe corridors for wildlife:

See Midpeninsula Regional Openspace District's website: "HIGHWAY 17 WILDLIFE PASSAGE" project to help protect animals from humans.
https://www.openspace.org/our-work/projects/wildlife-crossing

Posted by truthseqr truthseqr, January 15, 2018 22:48

Observations

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Rough-skinned Newt Taricha granulosa

Observer

truthseqr

Date

January 15, 2018 01:04 PM PST

Description

Rough-Skinned Newt (roadkill)

It just made me sick this morning to see 42 (yes, forty-two!!) dead newts on Alma Bridge Road. Many were bloody with guts spewed out (recently dead). Others were smashed flat so that the orange belly could not be seen.

See the following journal posting for more info: https://www.inaturalist.org/journal/truthseqr/13713-roadkill

I wish the highway dept. would put up barriers to keep the newts off the road and stop the carnage.

Description:

  • Warty, slate-gray skin on its back and bright orange-yellow skin underneath.
  • The eyes have patches of yellow
  • When seen from above, the eyes of T. granulosa do not extend past the margin of the head.
  • The lower eyelids of T. granulosa are dark in color.

(Alma Bridge Road)

Photos / Sounds

What

California Newt Taricha torosa

Observer

truthseqr

Date

January 15, 2018 12:48 PM PST

Description

Pacific Newt (roadkill)

It just made me sick this morning to see 42 (yes, forty-two!!) dead newts on Alma Bridge Road between Limekiln and Priest Rock Trailheads. Many were bloody with guts spewed out (recently dead). Others were smashed flat so that the orange belly could not be seen.

See the following journal posting for more info: https://www.inaturalist.org/journal/truthseqr/13713-roadkill

I wish the highway dept. would put up barriers to keep the newts off the road and stop the carnage.

(Alma Bridge Road)

Decomposition Rate Study

These observations show the decomposition of a newt over time. This will give us a sense of how fast the bodies decompose so that duplicate entries aren't added to the main project so the count is more accurate.

After 6 days:

Picture #1: 01/15/2018 (Mon)
Picture #2: 01/21/2018 (Sun)

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