The week ended with a number of coyote sightings and unfortunately, heightened coyote aggression against a mother and her young daughter in the Southern California community of Ladera Ranch. The story goes on to say the coyote then followed up by attacking and killing two dogs in the same neighborhood.
National Geographic has even gotten into observing movements of uber-urban coyotes.
As reported in The Chicago Tribune, dated January 15th, 2015 Wildlife Ecologist, Stan Gehrt and several associates retained by National Geographic monitored coyotes living in Chicago during the years 2013 and 2104. Gehrt and crew used “crittercams” and GPS to track some of the coyotes around and through the Chicago city limits. The study found that coyotes managed to negotiate heavily traveled streets and forage with little to no human intervention. The monitored coyotes often sat motionless as humans walked within just feet of the hiding coyote. The coyotes raised litters and survived reasonably well even under the Chicago Bears stadium parking lot.
Lots of media reports including the Albuquerque Journal reflect an increase in the number of coyote sightings. But is it really an increase in the coyote population? Maybe not- it could well be that the coyote population has been there all along and it is the human population that has increased hence more sightings. As pointed out by the Journal’s reporter, Winthrop Quigley Albuquerque contains within its city limits several miles of the Rio Grande River and its ecosystem. This ecosystem not only supports coyotes but other animals and birds not normally associated with city life. From the previous Chicago article coyotes have evolved within large metropolitan areas to not just survive but thrive.
Why would human urban and city dwellers believe the wild life found in the country is not be able to exist along side of them? One thing is certain, nature abhors a vacuum! Invariably, when coyotes are hunted down almost as many will escape and go on to breed and expand into those now vacant territories. The coyote has proven itself to be wily and one of the better survivors in or out of the city! Just outside of our back fence is an abundance of Bureau of Land Management (BLM) acreage. An arroyo runs from west to east toward the Rio Grande River through the adjacent BLM land. The arroyo is a virtual highway mostly populated by coyotes. The temperatures have been cold at night warming during the day, frozen night time ground doesn’t produce many tracks though. The Coyote Cam has some great day light shots but work is needed to improve the night photographs. Every one have a great week and be sure to check that shadow moving along side you in the bushes.