This article by Alisa Scerrato is full of information about coexisting with our urban wild coyotes. Press here to be taken to the article in Hoodline, an online journal covering the news in all of our San Francisco neighborhoods: http://hoodline.com/2017/02/how-to-coexist-with-wild-coyotes-from-sf-s-own-coyote-whisperer
21 Feb 2017 Leave a comment
19 Feb 2017 Leave a comment
Dear Community —
On Thursday, February 16, 2017 the Georgia Department of Natural Resources announced a Coyote Killing Contest. http://www.georgiawildlife.com/node/4325. This coyote killing contest which is to begin in March is ill-advised and inhumane.
If you agree, here’s what you can do to let your opposition be heard.
*post your opposition on your FaceBook page or whatever social media you use
*email GA DNR (http://www.gadnr.org/sendemail)
*call the GA DNR Commissioner’s office at (404) 656-3500
*email GA DNR – Wildlife Resources Division (http://www.georgiawildlife.com/InformationRequest)
*email your friends and ask them to voice their opposition through the above resources
If you are in Georgia:
Here are talking/email points that can be used.
- What is the reason for this inhumane contest?
- Removing coyotes does not reduce their population over the long term. In fact, the number of coyotes will increase as competition for resources is reduced. And, coyote populations will not increase beyond the carrying capacity of an area. So, they will not over populate, as some other species may do. To prove this point, the USDA Wildlife Services kills an estimated 70,000 coyotes each year and the number of coyotes has not diminished.
- Recent studies in South Carolina show that coyotes have minimal impact on deer populations (Kilgo et al., 2016). Most of their diet is rats, mice and other small rodents. Without coyotes, these prey populations would increase.
- Is it simply because they are not “native”? The reason that they now thrive in the southeast is that we removed wolves from this area. Each impact on a species has consequences. We often don’t recognize this impact until sometime in the future. And, what does native vs. non-native have to do with it anyway? Coyotes have been in Georgia for decades and are here to stay regardless of efforts to remove them.
- By killing coyotes in March, which is when pups begin to be born, these pups will be left to slowly starve to death. Would you want to watch a domestic dog’s pups slowly starve to death? Why not treat them with the same dignity?
- This contest also teaches people that it is ok to hold contests with the intent to kill life. In this case, there is no purpose to the contest as these dead coyotes will not be used for food, clothing, etc. Why do we want to teach people that senseless killing is ok?
- Even the GA Wildlife Resources Division Coyote Fact Sheet says: “Overall, the coyote is a largely misunderstood creature and despite its nuisance reputation proves to be an asset in maintaining the balance of wildlife in Georgia.”
- The mission of Georgia’s Wildlife Resources Division of the DNR is “to conserve, enhance and promote Georgia’s fish and wildlife resources and outdoor heritage through science-driven research, management, regulation and education.” This contest is not science-driven and is not conserving, enhancing and promoting wildlife resources. So, how does it support the Wildlife Resources Division’s mission?
- How does this contest support the Georgia Department of Natural Resources? DNR’s mission is “to sustain, enhance, protect and conserve Georgia’s natural, historic and cultural resources…that utilize sound environmental practices”. This contest is not sustaining, enhancing, protecting and promoting Georgia’s natural resources and does not utilize sound environmental practices. Killing contests do not support the GA DNR mission.
Thanks for supporting wildlife through your actions and for spreading the word to friends and colleagues and asking for their participation.
Linda, Meta and Janet
18 Feb 2017 Leave a comment
Answer: In the winter, lots! Certainly more than your own soaked coat and jeans, and more than your 30-pound dog’s coat unless it’s got longer fur than the coyote’s. From the looks of it, I’m supposing you could water two small potted plants for a week if you could only transplant the coyote as a sprinkler to your yard!
Coyote coats serve to insulate them against the elements. And the coats are fantastically camouflaged, helping them to blend into the landscape, especially during the dryer months. The coats aren’t large — they only cover scrawny, 30-pound frames, but the fur is long, reaching four-to-five inches in the winter. These coats are wonderfully crinkly and puffy, making coyotes look bigger than they actually are.
Their full coats will be shed in the springtime, at which time you can often see their ribs and hip bones poking up and visible through their skin. Their new coats will begin coming in sometime during late summer.
Shaking the rain off not only lightens the load — water is heavy — but it also serves to loosen some of the grime which has accumulated. Shaking also helps take care of the drip getting into their eyes. Oils and an undercoat prolong the time a coyote can stay dry in a downpour.
Coyotes are usually out, rain or shine, sometimes just to survey their territories and look around. Burrowing rodents must often come to the surface to keep from drowning during heavy rains, and coyotes often take advantage of this for hunting sprees.
06 Feb 2017 2 Comments
Some of our coyotes are dispersing right now as their parents prepare for the next breeding season. Usually between the ages of 1-3, coyotes disperse: they leave their birth homes to make their own way in the world. A coyote may be forced to leave by a sibling or parents, or it may leave on its own. As they explore new areas where they have not been before, you might see one — hurrying through a neighborhood, either down a street or on the sidewalks. They stick to these passageways because coyotes, just like humans, like taking the *path of least resistance*. When they find a place with adequate natural cover, they might try it out as a place to take refuge for a while.
They may live for the time-being without a territory and alone. Recently dispersed coyotes tend to live in smaller open spaces, and in-between and on the edges of other coyotes’ claimed territories, and they are not territorial. These individuals are called transients or interlopers. Transients include not only dispersed youngsters, but others who have been displaced from a family — even oldsters! Being social animals, they may get lonely and may at times seek out the company or achieve a mutual *truce* with amenable dogs although they are usually not quite willing to let down their guard totally to become friends.
Please do not befriend them, and never feed them. As consummate hunters and opportunistic eaters, they are totally able to provide for themselves. Please let them do this. Instead of being friendly, give them the cold-shoulder. They will be safer and so will your pets if you keep this psychological barrier in-place.
And please remember that, *a fed coyote is a dead coyote* — this has become a saying everyone should know. Food conditioning, which results from feeding them, causes coyotes to hang around humans, and sometimes approach and demand food. Wild animals normally defend themselves from fright, a startle, or anything else by nipping, and they will do so if provoked, even if you don’t think you are provoking them.
They will, of course, continue looking for a territory which has not already been claimed by another coyote family, or one that has been vacated for a number of reasons by another family.
Note that, once the carrying capacity of an area is filled, such as in San Francisco, coyotes move out of the city and south, where they have been found as far away as 60 miles within just a week or so. Dispersion is a high-risk time when more coyotes than usual are killed by cars. Please be careful when you drive.
31 Jan 2017 10 Comments
In this video, a coyote who begins her evening trekking routine, is spotted by a dog and harassed. After sprinting to escape him, she uses her wits to avoid a face-to-face confrontation. Although the dog may look as though he’s close to the coyote’s size, the dog easily outweighs her in heft by about double.
I have read where, to escape from pursuing wolves (which weigh two to three times as much as a coyote), coyotes will run up and down hills. A coyote is light, so running up a hill doesn’t take nearly as much effort for them as for a wolf. The wolf, who needs to expend much more energy going up the hill, wears out quickly and soon gives up the chase. Coyotes are able to figure this out and use hills strategically for their advantage.
Please also note that, although the coyote was able to wear out the dog totally, it also was exhausting for the coyote. She collapsed in the grass for a long time in order to recover. This amounts to harassment of wildlife and is actually illegal. Please don’t allow your dogs to chase our urban coyotes!.
23 Jan 2017 Leave a comment
Sirens sounded, HE responded in the distance, and then SHE (depicted here) responded to him. She had been napping and apparently she wasn’t ready to get up, so she didn’t. Hers are the high pitched, smooth vocalizations nearby in the foreground; his are the lower pitched barks in the background. She lay her head down and went back to sleep when she was through vocalizing.