Good bye 2016 and Hello 2017! Time for a change but human nature changes very slowly. Coyote news reports from across the country remain consistent, people ignore the laws of nature and pets (especially small pets) suffer. Sad to say another family pet was lost in Chicago and what was worse is that it happened on Christmas Day. The tragic story involves three specific traits; Coyote numbers are on the rise, People think it is ok to feed wildlife, People think that just because their pets were safe last week the pets will be safe this week too. Combine all three of these traits and a recipe for disaster is set in motion. Even though the number of reported Coyote incidents has risen dramatically many more go unreported. There have been more pets lost this year then in any other year and that number will continue to rise.
Many citizens attend public meetings seeking information to eliminating the “Coyote” problem every week. During each of those meetings an authority will advise the attendees there are multiple issues needing correction before the Coyote threat can be reduced. Some of those discussions will reflect that the process of eliminating the Coyote threat carries unintended consequences such as possible injuries to pets and humans. Prior issues of the Coyote Cam speaks to poisons and leg traps for those not familiar with the unintended consequences of attempting to eliminate Coyotes. Most authorities advise that Coyotes are often seen well before they become a nuisance and that is the best time to be proactive in Coyote elimination! As soon as the first Coyote is seen in the immediate area residents should look for the attractant that drew the Coyote to them. This is a great time to introduce yourself to your neighbors if you haven’t done so already! Many neighborhoods have “Crime Watch” organizations and those folks bring a lot of eyes so why not watch for Coyotes as well as bad guys. Some of you might put the Coyote and bad guys in the same bag but they are different, one is a creature of nature while the other is a creature with only bad intentions. Pooling the resources of neighborhood watch associations can be the first line of defense against Coyote problems!
One of your neighbors is stand offish and not the joining type. I can hear the murmurings of readers growing louder! In the case of a Neighborhood Watch Organization this is not really a problem as others can be relied on to augment the nonconformist. However, when it comes to yard maintenance and picking up after pets the nonconformist becomes the focal point for Coyotes. There will always be a nonconforming individual in the neighborhood crowd, someone who is not reasonable or responsible. This is where the local health or code enforcement authorities will make a difference, one call to those authorities and the nonconformist can rely on random checks through out the year. Some communities with strong health / code enforcement agencies establish a list as they realize nonconforming individuals need the proper motivation to clean up their home and lawns. Yeah that first call to health / code enforcement can be tough but the positive outcome could result in a nicer neighborhood and one free of Coyotes. The object is to encourage the Coyotes to go elsewhere and that is one of the goals of this blog, helping to better understand Coyotes and their habitats.
City and suburban areas are fairly easy to protect once one knows what to look for but the urban and agricultural areas will most certainly have an ongoing Coyote issue. A Coyote problem requiring sterner means of control, proactive here means terminating the critters. Unfortunately, this is where Coyote experts have learned that termination is not one hundred percent certain! Over the years Coyotes have learned to not only survive but thrive in impossible situations. In almost each and every case where Coyotes have been killed the following season sees an uptick in numbers. Mother nature abhors a vacuum and the Coyote validates that theory. Once the Coyote has established a territory they instinctively increase their numbers when ever the current numbers decrease. The final point in conjunction with the afore mentioned concepts is that once a Coyote has established its territory there is little to no chance of eliminating its progeny! Act when the first Coyote is seen and the eventual elimination is a tad more efficient!
Changing the story line here – This past Christmas the Coyote Cam was active, four Coyotes (alright – three full figures and a portion of a fourth) were recorded. The timing is interesting in that the Coyote Cam was a Christmas present some four years ago and the very first time it was put into use it recorded several Coyotes. The time in between then and now saw only a few Coyotes but the realty was that two cameras had to be replaced. Down time between camera replacements were lengthy which would account for the lower number of Coyote photographs. Following this edition readers will note the latest photographs of the local Coyote family, they do seem healthy this year! Why would the Coyotes hang around when so many of the neighbors take stringent precautions? Bureau of Land Management is not proactive in critter control until the animals involved become a problem. As noted above several pets are killed but few are ever officially reported as killed but simply as missing. The lands adjacent to this neighborhood are managed(?) by BLM and until missing pets are denoted as killed by Coyotes BLM will not take any action to eliminate the Coyotes running through BLM property.
Thank You for allowing this writer time off for Christmas and New Year. I sincerely hope you and your family are healthy and looking forward to the coming year.
Stay tuned – there is more to come on the Coyote Cam!