Coyote Watch — Get Involved
December 1, 2016
Additionally, Milwaukee County Parks wants you to help them inform others about the project. If you are a part of a neighborhood association, a member of one of the online Next Door Communities, or receive neighborhood updates through email or newsletters, they ask that you reach out to your neighbors and ask them to report coyote sightings in your neighborhoods and local parks.
The county is collaborating with the website iNaturalist.org to collect sightings data. If you see a coyote, report the observation to the Milwaukee County Coyote Watch project page: goo.gl/2kzCe2
Coyote sightings in and near Milwaukee County neighborhoods are fairly common and are rarely a cause for concern, according to iNaturalist.org.
The animals are naturally very skittish and wary creatures that will avoid human contact by either running away, when encountered, or by restricting their activities to nocturnal hours. In some circumstances however, often in urban and suburban environments, coyotes may become habituated, losing their innate fear of humans.
Habituation may result from food attractants in backyards, such as pet food, unsecured garbage, fallen fruit, etc., or repeated exposure to humans without negative consequences.
Behavior that may indicate a coyote has become habituated is if it is seen languishing in a park during the daytime in close proximity to humans, following humans and their pets, or not running away upon encountering people.
These bold behaviors associated with habituation are what can ultimately lead to human-coyote conflicts in urban areas. In order to proactively manage coyote behavior for a safe, sustainable, and long-term coexistence with these wild urban neighbors, it is of the utmost importance that county residents understand how human behavior and actions can influence them. The goal is to keep them wild and unhabituated to people.
Do not feed coyotes directly, or indirectly by leaving pet food, fallen fruit, fallen bird seed, etc. in your yard.
Reinforce the fear of humans when encountering a bold or habituated coyote. Chase and yell at the coyote and throw projectiles near the animal. If it is in your backyard, turn the hose on it.
When walking your dog, keep it on a leash. If you see a coyote, use hazing techniques to scare it away.
Coyote information above provided by iNaturalist.org
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