Coyotes, native to North America, are highly adaptable and resilient creatures that have successfully adapted to urban environments. As we strive for peaceful coexistence with these remarkable animals, it is crucial to understand how our actions can either promote harmony or create conflicts. In this article, we will explore effective strategies for co-existing with coyotes, drawing upon scientifically supported practices and expert recommendations.
- Be Big, Brave, and Loud Maintaining a healthy fear of humans is essential for coyotes’ natural behavior. By being big, brave, and loud when encountering a coyote, we help reinforce their instinctual wariness of people. This includes making loud noises, waving arms, and even using tools like pots, pans, or air horns to scare them away.
- Never Feed Coyotes Feeding coyotes is not only detrimental to their well-being but also puts us at risk. When coyotes become accustomed to being fed by people, they can lose their fear of humans and become bolder and potentially aggressive. Moreover, feeding coyotes can disrupt their natural diet and lead to undesirable behavior changes. Remember to scoop your pet’s poop as well, as the scent can attract wild animals and disturb their natural instincts.
- Ensure Pet Safety To ensure the safety of our beloved pets, it is crucial to keep dogs on a leash and cats indoors, especially at night. Coyotes may perceive outdoor cats as prey, and dogs can inadvertently provoke conflicts. By adhering to leash laws and keeping cats indoors or in secure enclosures like a “catio,” we reduce the chances of negative interactions.
- Spread the Word Sharing your sightings, educating neighbors about coexistence, and putting up posters in your neighborhood can raise awareness about the importance of co-existing with coyotes. By engaging the community in this endeavor, we create a collective effort towards peaceful coexistence.
- Implement Preventative Measures Taking proactive steps to minimize attractants and potential conflicts can significantly contribute to coexistence. Here are some preventive measures to consider:
- Keep pet food and water bowls indoors to avoid attracting coyotes to your yard.
- Partner with local TNSR (Trap Neuter Spay Return) and adoption organizations to manage feral cats through feed/remove programs.
- Keep trash cans covered with wildlife-proof lids.
- Pick up fallen fruit and eliminate accessible water sources.
- Avoid leaving a large amount of wild bird seed on your lawn, as it attracts small animals that are prey for coyotes.
- Supervise and Control Pets Supervising and controlling our pets is crucial for their safety and for minimizing potential conflicts. Adhering to leash laws, accompanying pets on walks, and not allowing them to roam freely reduces the risks they may face from traps, poison, vehicles, or encounters with other animals.
- Secure Enclosures for Small Animals If you have chickens, rabbits, or other small animals, it is essential to keep them in covered enclosures constructed with heavy mesh wire. This prevents coyotes and other predators from breaking through and accessing your pets.
- Avoid Approaching Coyotes Respect the natural behaviors and boundaries of coyotes. Do not approach them, their dens, or their pups, even if the parents seem absent. Coyotes generally avoid humans but may interact when provoked or if they are sick or injured. It is crucial to give them space and avoid risky behavior such as feeding, interfering with pups, or harassing them.
- Educate Children about Wildlife Teaching children about wildlife and providing them with guidance on safely responding to encounters with coyotes (or dogs) is crucial. Encourage them to appreciate and respect wildlife while maintaining appropriate boundaries for their safety and the well-being of the animals.
In conclusion, promoting peaceful coexistence with coyotes requires respect, compassion, and education. By implementing these common-sense practices, we can create a safe and healthy environment for both humans and wildlife. Let’s embrace the opportunity to live harmoniously with these magnificent creatures and foster a greater appreciation for the natural world.
Write a Letter to city council and the media in Support of a Humane Coyote Management Plan:
As a concerned resident, I wholeheartedly support the City of Saskatoon’s humane coyote management and coexistence plan. It is crucial to implement effective strategies that prevent and address conflicts between coyotes, people, and companion animals.
Approximately one coyote is killed every minute of every day. Let us stop this unnecessary loss of life by embracing peaceful coexistence.
- City of Saskatoon Advisory: Humane Coyote Management and Coexistence Plan
- City of Saskatoon Pamphlet
- Coyote Watch Canada
- Humane Society of the United States
- Project Coyote
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