Monitoring Wildlife Passage Structures along the Gorham Bypass

MaineDOT will spend transportation money constructing wildlife passage structures along a new bypass in Gorham. This Bypass consists of a roadway in an area where there is currently no roadway and there is use by wildlife. Wildlife underpass crossing structures have been incorporated along the bypass. These include bridges, oversized drainage structures with added substrate or shelving, large culverts for wildlife passage only, and oversized culverts with no other treatment. This three year study will measure the effectiveness of these treatments with the intent of using the data to develop future passage strategies. It is expected that the monitoring will begin pre construction with some baseline data gathering in vernal pools and wildlife use of the larger bridge crossings. Post construction monitoring will include Video surveillance using weather proof video cameras will be installed at both entrances to each passage. Camera systems and set-up will be similar to monitoring systems at other locations. We would also use sand beds to determine mammal usage through track surveys and wintertime track surveys after snow events to aid in determining wildlife usage adjacent to the bypass, and determination of movements and hesitancies. Pre-construction baseline monitoring will be conducted in the spring of 2007, which will build upon 2006 monitoring and anecdotal data collected during 2006. Due to the significance of this pool, monitoring will continue throughout the construction phase to ensure that it is not altered more than is required. Post-construction monitoring of the pool will begin in the spring following construction completion. This will include egg mass counts and dispersal routes .Monitoring of dispersal along the bypass under the Flaggy Meadow Bridge will consist of video surveillance and/or field sampling methods (e.g. pitfall traps). Post-construction monitoring of the site will document the productivity of the vernal pool and efficacy of the Flaggy Meadow passage.