It is important that we learn how to coexist with the wildlife in our area. They are not going anywhere. If you trap and remove some, more just move in to the neighborhood and the females will increase heat cycles, size of litters etc.
Coyote sightings can cause panic. If you want to know if you have coyote in your area, just answer the question: Do you have deer in your neighborhood? If you answered yes, then you defiantly have coyote. The coyote helps us by cleaning up dead, dying, sick or injured deer. They also eat rodents, squirrels etc. Coyote will try to find easy prey. They do not want to fight because it takes too much energy and they don’t want to get hurt.
It is also safest to not feed them or provide food accidently. Getting fed by humans takes a wild animals’ natural fear away. They become dependent on that handout and they visit more than they should and begin demanding and expecting food. This means dog or cat food left outside, grills that are not cleaned, garbage that is not kept secure and bird feeders. The seeds from bird feeders fall to the ground and small rodents come to eat. This will attract coyote.
Another item that will bring a coyote closer to your home is a dog in heat. Coyote have the same anatomy dogs do. So if your female dog is in heat you are bringing Coyote into your yard, on your deck etc. Don’t allow your dog whether male or female to venture into the woods without a leash. When you keep your dog close to you the coyote view that as an extension of you. You will not be approached by coyote that has natural fear of humans. Keeping yards cleared of any wood piles, debris, old dog houses, and over growth will help keep them away.
If there are coyote coming too close for comfort you can use air horns, paint ball guns, or just pots and pans to shoo them away. You can bang the pots and pans together or throw one in its direction if needed. Try not to act afraid and retreat into the house. You don’t ever want to make them feel like they claimed the property and ran you off. Some coyote have lost the fear of humans, so you need to put it back. Wildlife has been here long before us, so let’s try to live together.
Submitted by: Terri Baker, Animal Control Officer
Dayton Community News