Co-existence

The coyote is firmly established in the United States. They live as an integral part of our ecosystem. People and coyotes can coexist- if the natural fear of people that coyotes have is maintained.

  • DO feed pets indoors or promptly remove dishes when pets complete their meal outside. Store bags of pet food indoors.
  • DO clear brush and dense weeds from around property. This deprives rodents of shelter and reduces protective cover for coyotes. Use traps and rodenticides, if needed, to control rodents.
  • DO eliminate availability of bird seed. Coyotes are attracted to the concentration of birds and rodents that come to feeders. If you do feed birds, clean up waste seed and spillage.
  • Fencing your yard may deter coyotes. The fence should be tight to the ground, preferably extending six inches below ground level.
  • Teach children to appreciate coyotes from a distance.
  • DO keep pets indoors or keep a watchful eye on them, and walk dogs on leash.
  • DO use trash barrels equipped with tight clamping devices on the lids, which will prevent spills should they be tipped over by large animals. Garbage must be stored in secure containers.
  • DO try to educate your friends and neighbors about the problems associated with feeding coyotes. If you belong to a homeowner’s association or neighborhood watch, bring up the subject during one of the meetings.
  • DON’T feed or provide water for coyotes or other wild life. This practice abnormally attracts coyotes and promotes increased numbers of rodents, birds, snakes, and other creatures that can provide major portions of the coyote’s natural diet.
  • It is against the law for residents in some counties to feed coyotes, and certain other wild mammals.
  • Ask your neighbors to follow these same steps.
  • DON’T leave children outside unattended in areas known to be frequented by coyotes.
  • DON’T put trash cans out the night before scheduled pick-up. Put them out in the morning. This will give coyotes less time to scavenge, and they won’t have the cover of darkness. Coyotes are mainly active at night or twilight closer to urban developments.
  • DON’T use plastic bags as garbage containers. Coyotes can readily rip them open and scatter the contents.
  • DON’T put meat scraps in compost heaps.

The most suitable and humane method of handling coyote problems in an urban area is to deny the coyote food by taking care of pets and closing off the garbage supply. As food abundance becomes reduced, the coyote will move to more attractive habitat.