The Department of Transportation says on average there are 14,000 vehicle collisions a year in Nova Scotia. From 2011 to 2015, about 500 to 600 of those collisions involved vehicles striking animals, usually deer. The department has not finished compiling numbers for 2016 and 2017.
Those numbers come from police reports forwarded to the Transportation Department, but they only include incidents in which damage to a vehicle is more than $2,000 or in which someone is injured.
The Department of Natural Resources also tracks the number of animals hit by cars, but only if someone phones the department and tells workers what they hit.
DNR says from 2012 to 2017, 1,265 deer were struck by cars — the most of any one species. During the same period, 24 bears, 20 coyotes, 19 barred owls, 16 moose, 14 raccoons, 13 bobcats and 11 bald eagles were reported hit. That's just a sampling of the animals killed by vehicles, according to the department.