Roadkill is best to be avoided for numerous reasons — unless you plan to eat it.
It’s upsetting to see, destructive to experience, and frankly, just gross.
Now we know the roadkill “hot spots” in California to avoid, thanks to UC Davis researchers.
The UC Davis Road Ecology Center used data from the CHP and the California Roadkill Observation System, a system where users upload photos and locations of roadkill in the state, to map out the roads were the most vehicle-on-animal crashes occur.
According to the data, San Luis Obispo County has its fair share of roadkill.
SLO County roads with the most roadkill
The color-coded, interactive map indicates “roadway hot spots” as well as roadkill incidents involving large animals such as mountain lions and cows, and those involving deer.
The university research team collected data dating back to 2009 and mapped the average number of yearly roadkill incidents per mile.
The map also indicates roadkill incidents documented less than 24 hours ago and less than seven days ago.
Some of the most roadkill-filled cities in San Luis Obispo County are San Luis Obispo, Paso Robles and Atascadero.
El Camino Real is one common spot for car-versus-animal collisions. In a segment of the road heading into Paso Robles, there is an average of more than six incidents per year.
Other local roads with two or more roadkill accidents per year include Highway 1, which has segments near Morro Bay with more than five incidents per year, and Highway 227 in San Luis Obispo, where some portions average three incidents per year.
To see the roadkill hot spots map, visit roadecology.ucdavis.edu/hotspots/map.
You can upload your own photos of roadkill and help keep the map up-to-date by visiting the California Roadkill Observation System at www.wildlifecrossing.net/california.