British Columbia

5 moose hit and killed by cars in northern B.C. within a day

The animals have been walking on plowed highways to avoid deep snow, according to a conservation officer — but poor visibility and speed have also been factors.

Animals walking on plowed highways to avoid deep snow, conservation officer says

A moose, not unlike this one, trespassed on to Tad Baker's property to get another lick of road salt. (Shutterstock)

Eight moose in northern B.C. have been struck and killed by vehicles in the past month, with the local conservation service saying the latest dump of snow is partly to blame.

In Terrace alone, conservation officers said five were killed within 24 hours.

Collisions are happening, in part, because the moose are opting to walk along cleared highways instead of struggling through deep snow.

Metres-deep snow can make it difficult for moose to get around, pushing them toward freshly cleared roads. (Melanie Robinson/Facebook)

"They just can't move around much in the bush, so they get on the plowed roadways and travel around," said Sgt. Tracy Walbauer with the Terrace Conservation Service.

"They're also attracted to the salt and whatever ice melt is on the highway."

The moose have been hit in the early morning or the evening, when visibility is low. Walbauer said drivers who aren't necessarily driving for the conditions are also part of the problem.

"People are just driving too fast, driving beyond their headlights," he said. "It's probably not going to get any better because we're expecting even more snow." 

The moose have been hit by vehicles in the early morning or the evening when visibility is low, said Terrace Conservation Service. (Terrace Conservation Service)

The conservation service said some moose die on impact, but others have to be euthanized. Walbauer said some deer have also been hit.

"Take some time, take your foot off the throttle and get where you're going safe," he said.

There have been no reports of injuries to drivers as a result of the conditions.

With files from Audrey MacKinnon