Have you seen a coyote in Golden Valley recently? According to our interactive map, there have been a few sightings nearby.
Siah St. Clair, director of Fridley's Springbrook Nature Center, e-mailed several reasons people might be seeing coyotes more this time of year:
Coyotes are endemic to suburban and even urban areas of the Twin Cities. The number of sightings have increased in recent years, which may or may not suggest an increase in population size. While still very wary and elusive, they can be bold and approach someone walking a small dog. When coyotes are present, small dogs should not be left unattended.
In the fall young coyotes are starting to disperse to new areas, and adults are freed up from raising young and have more time to patrol their territories. And since the leaves are down, there is a better chance of seeing them.
Healthy wild coyotes avoid people, but populations have been increasing in the Twin Cities.
No coyote attacks on people have occurred in Minnesota, but they can raid garbage cans and kill small dogs and cats. At least two dogs were killed in St. Louis Park last year.
Attacks by urban coyotes have occurred in other states, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. Experts think those attacks took place after the coyote became accustomed to humans.
To help us identify where the coyotes are, please add a marker to the map above. Simply click the "Add" button, supply your name and additional information (was a pet with you? How many did you see? Did they approach or run away? Etc.), and enter an address. If you don't have an exact address, an intersection will do. Also, please enter the date you saw the coyote(s), as best as you can remember.
The DNR does not trap, shoot or relocate coyotes. Removal of coyote, when necessary, is the responsibility of the landowner.
See below for more DNR tips on living with coyotes.
- Secure all garbage containers, wildlife feeders and other food sources to prevent coyote access.
- Confine small dogs and cats in kennels or supervise them when outside.
- Vaccinate all pets for rabies, distemper, parvo and other diseases, as recommended by a veterinarian.
- Consider installing coyote-proof fencing.
- Harass (by chasing, shouting, etc.) any coyotes that do not immediately run from people.
- Feed coyotes.
- Leave pet food outside.
- Allow cats and small dogs outside, unattended.
SOURCE: “Urban Coyotes” page on the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources website.