Have you seen coyotes in or around your neighborhood? It is common to see coyotes around February-March because it is their breeding season. In urban areas, coyotes may lose their fear of people and become very bold when searching for food during colder weather. Coyotes, like other wild animals, will go for food that is easy to get. Coyotes are true scavengers, eating snakes, rodents, rabbits, fruits, vegetables, pet food and garbage.
Here are some tips to keep coyotes out of your yard:
- Do not feed birds or rabbits. The food for small prey and the small prey itself will attract coyotes and teach them there is a regular food source available.
- Do not allow your landscaping to become overgrown, as that can allow for easy hiding places for coyotes. Coyote dens can be underground or above ground in brush piles.
- Make sure trash can lids are securely attached and closed.
- Never allow small pets to go outside unattended. A small animal is easy prey for multiple wild animals, including coyotes and large birds of prey such as hawks and owls.
- Make sure your yard has plenty of lighting, especially if you let your pets outside at night. A fenced yard may help keep wildlife out of your yard, but small pets should still be supervised.
Also important: Keep your pets' vaccinations up-to-date. Coyotes can transmit Canine Distemper.
What do you do if you see a coyote? Make loud noises, by yelling or banging pots and pans. Coyotes do not like to be startled. Motion detection lighting around your house can also help in hindering their hiding spots. The bottom line is to prevent coyotes and their pups from losing their fear of people and becoming nuisance wildlife.