Urban Coyotes

canstockphoto18050217My experiences with urban coyotes have spanned over three decades here in Edmonton. I am mostly pleased that they are so adaptable amongst their two legged neighbors. When I managed Cheyenne Tree Farms North through the early eighties, there was a large population of coyotes that would bay at the moon or the passing trains at night. The pups even befriended my dog. He thankfully learned quickly enough not to trust them, especially after they became sizable yearlings.  I see urban coyotes in my Westmount neighborhood at least a couple times a year as they travel up from the ravine in search of food. We have quite a few fruit trees in our neighbourhood and I have seen them feeding on our Nanking cherry hedge. We often see posters of missing cats, and a couple of times, remnants of some unfortunate coyote meal when walking our present dog Teddy around the neighborhood. My most recent coyote sighting happened just a week ago Friday. Yes, the very morning after our lecture on urban coyotes. I was opening my upstairs blinds at 5:45 am and looking down on my front sidewalk was a young and malnourished mangy coyote looking up at me. Tragically with that classic skinny rat tail we had just learned about less than 12 hours earlier. It obviously was in a state of discomfort as, while standing there, it was aimlessly scratching its threadbare side. To be humane, I called in and reported my sighting. It was not an easy call.

For more information on urban coyotes, visit: Edmonton Urban Coyote Project.

Margaret Lorenzen, Edmonton Master Naturalist 2015

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