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Protect our wildlife migration corridors

Wildlife migration corridors and riparian areas are under threat from growing human populations. Colorado residents are fortunate to live in a state with spectacular outdoor opportunities, but we need to protect our special places and the species who live there.

As a sportswoman and conservationist, I value Colorado’s wild places and respect the wild animals that live there.

As our state’s population swells and more land is developed, it is imperative to consider protecting wildlife migration corridors before they are gone. Development of fences, unsanctioned trails and roads disrupt these important corridors for deer, elk, bighorn sheep, mountain lions, bears and other species that are important and appreciated.

According to the state Department of Transportation, Colorado has succeeded in helping conserve wildlife migration and significantly decrease traffic accidents on Colorado Highway 9 between Green Mountain and Kremmling. In its first year, the under- and overpasses installed decreased wildlife traffic interactions by 90%.

Just think of what that kind of forward thinking, planning and budgeting could do around the rest of the state.

Through partnerships with state agencies, private landowners, and others, maintaining migration corridors and the riparian areas and waterways the animals rely on will happen.

As citizens, we need our voices heard about the high priority this is for us, visitors to our state and future generations.

If we act now, we can save these habitats and protect the species who call our state home.

Emily Ledergerber

Durango