Helping Wildlife – Coyotes
Coyotes (Canis latrans) are found in all 88 counties of Ohio. They have shown a preference for making their homes in hilly farmland mixed with wooded areas, but have adapted to most every setting in the suburban and urban landscapes. The coyote is a nocturnal animal, mostly active from dusk to dawn. However, when it is less threatened by man, it may hunt and move from place to place during the day. Coyotes are omnivores, which means they eat both meat and plants. The coyote diet consists mainly of small mammals including shrews, voles, rabbits and mice. The coyote will also eat fruits, vegetables and insects. Ample food can be found in dumpsters or garbage cans in urban areas.
ARE THE RUMORS TRUE?
- Coyotes that live in urban and suburban environments do not usually travel and hunt in packs. A group of coyotes is usually a family in which the young are not yet mature enough to survive alone.
- Coyotes are shy and cautious animals; they will avoid people whenever possible. The exception to this rule is when a coyote has been conditioned to come to people; perhaps people provided food for it when it was young, and it learned to approach a home. The only recorded coyote bites against humans have been by habituated (conditioned) coyotes.
THE CASE AGAINST TRAPPING & RELOCATING
The primary argument against attempting to remove coyotes from an area is based on the facts of coyote reproduction and behavior. In areas where there have been reductions in the coyote population due to human efforts, coyotes typically increase their litter size until the population is again brought up to the level that the habitat can sustain. In addition, empty territories attract coyotes that migrate to fill in the void. Source
City attempts to calm fears of residents
Over the last few months, there have been increased sightings of coyotes in Hamilton County. Earlier this year, the Great Parks organization made it their mission to educate residents about the furry creatures. They put on a presentation called “How to Coexist with Urban Coyotes.” The presentation went over the behavior and habits of coyotes in an effort to debunk myths and minimize public concern. Nature interpreters detailed ways people can coexist with these predators so that their presence benefits the ecosystem instead of causing issues with humans.
County officials were trying to calm fears of local residents through this initiative, stating that coyotes do not want to be around people just as much as we don’t want them around. Although coyotes are noted as the top predator in the state of Ohio, they are reminding people that there are a few easy ways to minimize the risk to their pets and to their homes ands yards.
Myths and misconceptions about urban coyotes
Increased coyote sightings throughout Hamilton County and a rising mixture of concern and curiosity inspired Great Parks’ presentation called “How to Coexist with Urban Coyotes.”
Great Parks nature interpreters will present information and answer questions in four parks through the month of February, just in time for the coyote breeding season.
The presentations outline the behavior and habits of coyotes in an effort to debunk myths and ideally minimize public concern. Read more
Summary: Over the last few months, there have been increased sightings of coyotes in Hamilton County. Earlier this year, the Great Parks organization made it their mission to educate residents about the furry creatures.
How To Coexist With Urban Coyotes
When coyotes start howling, their cacophonous calls may sound alarming to some people. However, the sporadic-sounding yelps are generally just canine chitchat.
The park district is on a mission to inform people coyotes aren’t the threat some may believe.
“They don’t want to be around people. They don’t want to be in close proximity to people. Their natural instinct is to stay as far away from us as possible,” Marczi says.
Coyotes are considered the top predator in Ohio, and they fall into what Marczi calls a “golden window” where they’re just the right size to prey on smaller animals and some bigger animals like sick or injured deer. Learn more
Summary: Coyote sightings in urban areas have increased over the past year. Officials have been attempting to calm concerns of local residents.