Many wild animals live in Idaho, and from time to time they will make their way into town or cross our paths on the road. It is best to always be aware and ready in case one jumps out, but sometimes they dart in front of you and there is no time to prepare. Hitting a smaller animal will likely not mess up your car, but hitting a larger one will do some damage to your car, and could hurt you as well. While some animals are easier to spot than others, some are hard to see and could lead to you being in an accident you don't see coming.

Hitting a Moose in Idaho

Greg
Greg
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When driving down the road, if you ever see a deer at night, you will likely see it look up and its eyes reflect at you, forcing you to slam your brakes, and hopefully avoid it. A story recently came out discussing why hitting a moose is likely to happen compared to other animals. While animals like deer and coyotes are near headlight level, not all animals are. For an animal as large as a moose, their heads are high enough up that you won't see their eyes reflect at you, making it tougher to see them at night. With their dark fur, long legs, and big bodies, they blend into the night, and before you know it, you could find yourself hitting a moose that you somehow never saw coming. Elk are of a similar build, but not as tall, giving you a better chance to see their eye reflect, similar to a deer. 

Animal Crossings in Idaho

Credit: Pascal-L-Marius
Credit: Pascal-L-Marius
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As winter is quickly approaching, animals will be looking to get food, get warm, and will likely find themselves crossing roads in front of moving vehicles. It is important to make sure and slow down in areas that are known to have animals crossing and to be a defensive driver. As stated above, there are times when you won't see an animal right in front of you or until it is too late. With rain and snow possibly obstructing your view during the winter, it can make it even tougher to see these animals, and they will dart in front of you with no fear. Hitting one of these animals will not only harm them, but will do severe damage to your vehicle and in some instances could cost you your life and theirs. Be cautious when going to the mountains or the South Hills. 

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As you drive around looking at Christmas lights, going to cut down a Christmas tree, or are out driving at night, make sure to be careful and alert, because you never know what could pop out in front of you. There are always animals nearby, and if you aren't paying attention, you might hit one with your car.

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