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Watch for Wintering Wildlife

Snow has already fallen in parts of Idaho and big game animals will soon be on the move, often into situations dangerous to them and to motorists.

When snow covers the high country where big game animals spend most of the year, deer and elk have to move toward the river valleys to find food. That is how deer and elk evolved to survive in the Idaho climate. High-speed roadways now share this winter habitat with potential danger to both animals and motorists.

Drivers need to be aware that big game animals can appear suddenly in their lane almost anywhere in Idaho but they need to be particularly careful where they see warning signs. Those signs are posted on roads by the Idaho Department of Transportation in collaboration with Idaho Fish and Game in an attempt to save animals and motorists from death and injury. The signs are posted mostly in known corridors of heavy use by big game animals.

Slowing down and paying extra attention this time of year and through the winter is the only way to prevent a serious incident, especially as shorter days make spotting animals difficult.