Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Coyote update - meeting held with officials from FWC - here is authoritative information regarding co-existing with Coyotes in Florida.

Photo of a coyote in Palmetto Bay
Palmetto Bay is a paradise that we humans share with many native and non-native animals. CLICK HERE to view some of my past posts regarding the many species of animals we can find here in Palmetto Bay; crocodiles, alligators, eagles, marsh rabbits, owls. There is a long list of animals that call Palmetto Bay home. We do note that there are some animals that we do want to keep close eye on - including those designated as "invasive species".  

Reports continue in regard to coyotes in our Palmetto Bay community as well as in nearby Kings Bay, actually located in Coral Gables. A conference call was held with FWC officials, myself and with members of our community (I was joined on the call by residents/animal activists Cindy Hewitt and Lloyd Brown) on the topic of coyotes. Palmetto Bay went to the source to find out the issues, as well as status, potential issues and management strategies (if any).  We look forward to working with Greg from the Wildlife Assistance Program Coordinator for the FWC, on a future “Living with Wildlife” workshop or presentation.

Information regarding Coyotes in Florida  posted on the official FWC website: 
Coyotes are found throughout Florida and have been documented in all 67 counties. This medium-sized canid is extremely adaptable and can be found in rural, suburban and even urban landscapes. They are typically shy and elusive but encounters between people and coyotes in Florida are occurring more often. Coyotes help maintain balanced ecosystems by controlling the populations of rodents and small predators, such as foxes, opossums and raccoons. They are native to North America, have been in Florida for many years, and will continue to make their homes around the state.
The mission of the FWC program is to mitigate human-wildlife conflict through education, outreach and technical assistance. The members of FWC work with individual citizens, neighborhood groups, local government agencies and other stakeholders on nuisance wildlife issues and human-wildlife conflict resolution strategies. 

We look forward to developing a strong relationship between Palmetto Bay and FWC to monitor and manage these issues.

Please view the FWC website for information on Coyotes – and everyone I have spoken to is quite surprised to hear that Coyotes have been found in ALL 67 counties in Florida. 

See FWC's "Living with Coyotes". http://myfwc.com/conservation/you-conserve/wildlife/coyotes/ There is also a link on this site for the Urban Coyote Brochure .

Important: If you are experiencing coyote problems, please contact the FWC’s Wildlife Alert at 888-404-FWCC (3922) or your nearest FWC regional office: West Palm: 561-625-5122

Prior blog posts on this topic:
August 18, 2017, Update on Coyotes in our area – updated/better photos – have you seen any?
June 4, 2017, Guest Post - Coyotes in Palmetto Bay? What have you seen?

CLICK HERE to view prior posts relating to FWC.

Addressed on the official FWC website:

What should I do if I see a coyote?

Coyotes are not large animals and rarely pose a threat to people, especially adults. They can be curious but are also timid and generally run away if challenged. If a coyote approaches too closely, there are methods you can use to deter it and frighten it away. Hazing the animal by making loud noises and acting aggressively will typically cause a coyote to leave an area, but you may need to increase and continue hazing efforts until the coyote is effectively deterred and leaves the area for good. There are several methods of hazing that are effective with coyotes.  (please go to the website for complete information on this topic)

How can I protect my pets from coyotes?

Coyotes can and do prey on domestic cats and small dogs. Most coyote attacks on pets occur either at night or in the early evening or morning hours (dusk and dawn). To protect your pets, do not allow them to roam freely. 
(Again, please go to the FWC website for complete information on this topic)

Why can’t coyotes be relocated or completely eliminated from my neighborhood?
  • Removing coyotes is an inefficient and ineffective method to control populations. New coyotes move into areas where others have been removed. When there is pressure (such as trapping) placed on coyote populations, the species can actually produce more pups per litter in response and populations can quickly return to original size.  
  • Coyotes are found throughout the entire state of Florida as part of natural range expansion from western states and now live in every state but Hawaii. 
  • Coyotes fill an important role in the ecosystem by keeping rodent and small predator (fox, raccoon, opossum, etc.) populations under control

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