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Road Salt.
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Dimitri
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Joined: Nov 25, 2005
Posts: 5906
Location: Southern Ontario

PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 9:57 pm    Post subject: Road Salt. Reply with quote

I was reading "American Hunter" July 2006 Edition and came over something interesting so I looked it up and found this artical:

Quote::
Road salt blamed for roadkill rise
Apr. 22, 2006. 01:00 AM
ROBERT ALISON
SPECIAL TO THE STAR

The number of wildlife killed on Canada's roads is soaring, and one major reason may be that the animals are "intoxicated" after ingesting road salt.

According to the Canada Safety Council, ungulates such as deer and moose pose a "menace to unsuspecting motorists — and motorists are a menace to unsuspecting wildlife."

The most recent data show Canada's wildlife roadkill has doubled in the past decade.

Most of the victims are big-game animals: 500 moose annually in Newfoundland; 7,000 deer, moose, caribou and black bears in Quebec. Ontario averages more than 10,000 wildlife-vehicle collisions a year, and such collisions injure more than 200 people. The safety council reports that there is a collision every 38 minutes in Ontario.

The temporary, debilitating intoxication due to salt ingestion is a major factor in such incidents, according to new studies by Pierre Mineau and Lorna Brownlea of the National Wildlife Research Centre in Ottawa.

Studies at Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario and at Mount Revelstoke National Park in British Columbia suggest that salt toxicity caused by the ingestion of sodium chloride impairs wildlife brain function. Such impairment makes wildlife less able to avoid being struck by vehicles. Impairment can be caused by ingesting as few as five salt particles.

Grouse and pheasants also consume road salt. Until now, researchers had thought that these birds are drawn to road gravel as grit. But it is the salt content they crave, often fatally. Apparently tame roadside grouse are a common sight in much of Canada, but scientists now speculate the birds are not tame but lethargic because of salt toxicity.

Huge songbird losses due to road salt ingestion have been documented globally. A widespread avian preference for sodium chloride grit has been researched in several countries.

Hunting near roads has long been popular in much of Canada, and researchers say that wild animals, stupefied by road salt, are much more vulnerable than would normally be the case.

Initiatives are underway to reduce Canada's wildlife roadkill, including a system that uses infrared sensors to warn motorists of nearby wildlife. Other methods that focus on warning animals of approaching vehicles might not work all that well because salt intoxication impairs wildlife threat perception.

Alternatives to road salt are being studied in several provinces, notably Alberta and Saskatchewan.

What are your thoughts/comments ??

Dimitri

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A thousand hills, but no birds in flight, ten thousand paths, with no people's tracks. A lonely boat, a straw-hatted old man, fishing alone in the cold river snow.
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TomTalker
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Joined: Jul 29, 2006
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Location: SW Ontario

PostPosted: Sun Aug 06, 2006 9:38 am    Post subject: Re: Road Salt. Reply with quote

Not sure about the intoxicant effect but I have many times been driving and seen whitetails licking the pavement at night. i can see the birds picking the salt crystals as grit and od'ing on salt
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Dimitri
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Location: Southern Ontario

PostPosted: Sun Aug 06, 2006 10:47 am    Post subject: Re: Road Salt. Reply with quote

Pierre Mineau the same researcher is talking about how birds are actually killing themselves with salt. Smile

Quote::
Salty dilemma - Brief Article
Environment, March, 2003 by Paul V. Haynor

Every year, Canadians apply five million metric tonnes of salt to deice roads. Unfortunately, the salt has negative and even deadly effects on both terrestrial and aquatic plants and animals, according to a study released by Environment Canada.

Roadway salt attracts animals such as deer, moose, porcupines, and hares, but for some of the animals that lick the salt off roads, the treat becomes an addiction. Some birds can die from as little as two large grains of roadside salt, according to Pierre Mineau, research scientist for the Canadian Wildlife Service.

In addition, plants as far as 80 meters from multilane highways suffer from salt absorption, and many common landscape trees are sensitive to road salt. The Riversides Stewardship Alliance (RSA) studied salt levels in Toronto-area waterways in 2001 and found salt in area creeks and rivers at concentrations between 2 and 29 times greater than the provincial limit of 100 milligrams per liter (mg/L).

According to RSA's Kevin Mercer, some waterways had salt lev els capable of causing short-term toxicity--defined by Environment Canada as 1400 mg/L. RSA has called for a 20 to 50 percent reduction in salt use. Although alternative de-icers do exist, they cost several times more than salt, so for the time being, to ensure road safety, salt use will continue. However, a risk management team is being established by Environment Canada to regulate and reduce the use of road salt.

--Alternatives Journal, Fall. (P.H.)

I think Pierre Mineau doesnt like salt that much Very Happy

TomTalker,

Down in London do they put alot of the gravel on the roads in the winter to try and avoid using salt ?? I know in Grey Bruce they do that to try and not kill off the farm lands around the roads Smile

Dimitri

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TomTalker
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Location: SW Ontario

PostPosted: Sun Aug 06, 2006 11:18 am    Post subject: Re: Road Salt. Reply with quote

They use a salted gravel and they really lay it on. Black ice is a problem due to our humid climate. Put me and the Jeep in the ditch once last winter/tt
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Dimitri
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Joined: Nov 25, 2005
Posts: 5906
Location: Southern Ontario

PostPosted: Sun Aug 06, 2006 11:21 am    Post subject: Re: Road Salt. Reply with quote

TomTalker,

Sorry to hear about your accident. Up in Grey Bruce they use a mix of Salted Gravel as well as far as I know Smile I 'ved there for years but never payed much attention to it Smile

Dimitri

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