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Elk Island Park looks to save animals with speed bumps


Elk Island Park is slowing down drivers to help save animals.

Since 2020, six bison have been hit and killed by vehicles in the national park. To protect their herd, Elks Island has installed speed bumps.

"In August here we had a single vehicle wipe out and kill a large male bison, a plains bison," said park superintendent Dale Kirkland. "And then just two years ago, in September, we had a single vehicle strike and kill three female bison."

Elk Island previously installed speed display signs to reduce speeding, but they haven't helped slow everyone down.

Kirkland said one speed sign in the park recorded a driver going 144 km/hour in 40 km/hour zone.

It's disappointing and frustrating to see those speeds, he added, and dangerous for drivers too.

"Striking a bison is like nearly running into a wall, you’re running into a 2,000 pound animal," he said.

The park has a population of around 550 plains bison and Kirkland says protecting them is critical, as the genetically-diverse group is a source of transfers and conservation initiatives around the world.

"It speaks to why this herd here is so valuable and so important," he added. "We all have a shared responsibility in protecting this great species and this majestic animal."

If the current slow-down initiatives don't work and speed continues to be a problem, Kirkland said more bumps and other measures could be added down the road. Top Stories

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