Coyotes are common throughout North America, including in urban areas. Yes, even in every major metropolitan city.
These facts and safety tips will help increase comfort and decrease conflicts when living or recreating near America’s native “Song Dog”.
FACTS • Coyotes are members of the dog family; they are curious, remarkably adaptable, and learn quickly.
• Coyotes are monogamous and mate for life they are devoted parents, and are highly communicative (barks, yips, howls).
• Coyotes weigh 20-50 pounds in our area. Our average coyotes are about 35 pounds.
• Coyotes may be more protective of dens and territories during pup rearing (April-Aug).
• Coyotes eat large numbers of rodents and rabbits, as well as fruit, vegetation, insects and carrion (roadkill). They help keep vital ecosystems in balance, healthy and clean. But human and pet foods (and water) may attract coyotes, so eliminate these attractants to reduce negative encounters.
• Coyotes are naturally wary of people but can habituate to our presence and the reliable food sources that we provide.
SAFETY • DON’T FEED COYOTES. Their life and public safety depend on coyotes remaining wild and naturally wary of people.
• Remove attractants; pick up trash, secure garbage, and feed pets inside. Don’t leave food outside at night.
• Always walk dogs on leashes, especially during pup rearing season (April-Aug). Pick up your small dog if you see a coyote and don’t let pets roam at large. And don't forget hand held leashes are legally required for your dogs.
• If approached, don’t run. Wave arms, make noise and walk toward the coyote until he retreats. Be “Big, Bad and Loud.” See Hazing Guidelines below
• Avoid areas where coyotes may be denning or feeding/hiding pups. (Vacant lots with lots of places to hide.)
EDUCATED COEXISTENCE Urban landscapes offer an abundance of food, water, and shelter for coyotes. If you frequently see a coyote near your home, one or more neighbors may be unknowingly providing food or shelter. Take the following steps to prevent coyotes from being attracted to your home.
Wildlife-proof garbage in sturdy containers with tight fitting lids.
Don’t leave pet food outside.Share this list with your neighbors; coexistence is a neighborhood effort.
Take out trash the morning pick up is scheduled.
Keep compost in secure containers.
Keep fallen fruit off the ground. Coyotes eat fruit.
coyotes are seen in your yard.which then attract coyotes. Remove feeders if Keep birdseed off the ground; seeds attract rodents
Install motion-sensor lights near buildings.
Keep barbecue grills clean.
Eliminate accessible water sources.
Clear away brush and dense weeds near buildings.
Close off crawl spaces under decks and around buildings where coyotes may den.
If you frequently see a coyote in your yard, make loud noises with pots, pans, or air horns, and haze the coyote with a water hose.
HAZING METHODS Hazing simply means scaring a coyote away from you, your yard, or your neighborhood. Coyotes are members of the dog family, and just as we train our dogs to adopt good behavior, we can reinforce a coyote’s natural instinct to avoid people without harming them. Using a variety of different hazing tools is critical because coyotes can habituate to individual items, sounds, and actions.
Yell and wave your arms while approaching the coyote.
Use noisemakers (e.g. your voice, whistles, air horns, bells, soda cans filled with pennies or dead batteries, pots and pans banged together).
Use projectiles to scare not harm (e.g. sticks, small rocks, cans, tennis balls, rubber balls).
Try other repellents (e.g. hoses, water guns with vinegar water, spray bottles with vinegar water, pepper spray, flashing lights, or walking sticks).
Coyotes aren't the only threat that cats face when they go outside there are far greater dangers. When you allow your cat to roam freely outdoors, even for short periods of time, you expose her to perils such as cars, dogs, diseases, coyotes, poisons, and cruel people. If you want your cat to be safe, keep her indoors.
Some people let their cats outside because they mistakenly believe it's cruel to keep cats indoors. The truth is that cats who are protected from the dangers outside live longer, happier lives. (You'll be helping your neighboring wildlife stay safer and happier as well.)
Protecting feral cat colonies
People who feed feral cats are often concerned that coyotes might prey on the cats. These concerns are well founded, as coyotes will be attracted to both the outdoor pet food and the cats themselves as prey.
Coyotes will kill a feral cat to protect its food source and territory from a smaller competing predator. This is especially true when these mismatched predators come to meet where there is a resource worth fighting over.
Here are some general suggestions for keeping such cats safer:
Feed cats only during the day and at a set time if you must feed outdoors feed for only 15 minutes and pick up any leftovers immediately. Excess food can be a siren call for coyotes and for rats. Both increase the likelihood of a negative encounter
Provide escape routes for cats
In treeless or open areas, erect "cat posts"—long pieces of wood (four inches by four inches or corner posts) that stand out of the ground at least ten to twelve feet. These canbe climbed by cats but not by coyotes
Elevate feeding stations beyond coyotes, but not the cats reach
Discourage/harass coyotes seen on the property. Go after them aggressively, usingthe techniques described in our coyote hazing guidelines. Making them feel uncomfortable will encourage them to stay out of the area.