Do you occasionally see glowing eyes staring at you from the underbrush at night and hear high-pitched yips? You most likely have some coyotes around and you’re probably wondering how to deal with coyotes! That is to be expected, given that they are extremely successful predators. Simply put, they don’t always make the best neighbors.
Here are some strategies for dealing with coyotes that will benefit all parties.
Where Are Coyotes Common?
All over North and Central America, these canids are widely scattered. You can find them from Alaska to Costa Rica and everywhere in between. Furthermore, they are equally prevalent in urban and rural settings.
Coyotes are now seen in cities and suburbs across the continent due to habitat loss brought on by urbanization. They are elusive, shy creatures, so you might not be able to see them, but you can bet that they are there.
Are Coyotes Good or Bad?
The labels “good” and “bad” are rather sweeping and ignore subtleties. They depend heavily on personal experience and are also very divisive.
For instance, someone who has experienced problems with coyotes eating their pet cats or lambs will view coyotes as evil. On the other hand, growers of vegetables will value the assistance of coyotes since they will see a decrease in damage to their crops from rabbits, squirrels, and gophers. “Good” or “bad”, you’ll need to deal with coyotes!
The term “keystone species” refers to these predators. This implies that their presence—or absence—substantially impacts the neighborhood ecosystem. Additionally, other local species are impacted by their presence or absence.
Coyotes may have devoured your pet cats, which you may not like. Still, by doing so, they unquestionably prevented countless wild birds from being killed by your cats. By eradicating nest predators, they’ll maintain robust fowl populations (including grouse, wild turkey, and pheasant), which is advantageous for seasonal hunters.
Furthermore, these wolf relatives adore eating mice, rats, voles, moles, and shrews. Some of their favorite food are those! Suppose coyotes have established a nest near your house or outbuildings. In that case, you may be confident that they will actively control the rodent population. In fact, as coyote populations decline, a lot of people see a large increase in tiny rodent populations.
That’s a very decent justification for keeping them, right?
Are Coyotes Dangerous?
Not in general to people. In actuality, there have only been two fatal coyote attacks on people. While these canids occasionally attack humans, these attacks are uncommon and frequently explicable. For instance, a hungry coyote may attempt to devour a young child eating outside alone, or a pack of urban coyotes may feed on a homeless man who is close to death.
These behaviors are how these wolf cousins are wired; they are not vicious attacks. Wild canids remove young, frail, and diseased animals from herds, including deer and similar creatures. Since people are also animals, they don’t really distinguish between the extremely small or the elderly and dying.
Furthermore, ferocious coyotes will attack almost anything.
Nevertheless, these animals normally make an effort to avoid interacting with people. All should be well if you maintain a reasonable amount of respectful distance from one another and take measures to prevent luring them.
How to Live With Coyotes Peacefully?
Preventative actions are one of the simplest methods to deal with coyotes. Like how mice are handled, if you don’t provide them easy access to food and make the environment hostile, they’ll look elsewhere for shelter and nourishment.
You can spread coyote urine on your land to scare other packs (and some smaller animals away). I highly recommend trying this before using anything that may hurt the local environment! Here’s a cheap bottle of coyote urine I’ve used in the past!
Make Your Land Less Appealing
Make areas inaccessible if you believe coyotes hide out in dilapidated barns or beneath piles of trash. Barns should be locked up, woodpiles should be removed (after chasing away any animals nesting there, of course), and any other potential den locations should be fenced off.
Keep the grass cut; as they prefer to blend into long grasses and bushes when hunting, close-cropped grass is unattractive.
Additionally, you can purchase some wolf pee or excrement from a nearby zoo or animal sanctuary and distribute it about the edges of your property. The smaller canids typically avoid each other, even though coyotes and wolves will occasionally breed to produce “coywolves.” Because they are the top predators, wolves will kill coyotes they perceive as competitors for food supplies. Their aroma serves as a reliable deterrent for predators.
Installing motion sensor lights is an additional solution. Animals will stay away from regions where those things frequently happen since they detest loud noises and bright lights. They’ll get the fridge out very quickly if you set up some sensors that react with powerful floodlights or strobes.
Don’t Give Them a Meal
Coyotes frequent residential areas and homesteads for various reasons, including the abundance of food available. Additionally, we’re not only referring to sleepy hens or careless domestic pets.
Along with raccoons, coyotes are drawn to trash cans and compost bins. Keep your bins within secured containers, and as an additional safety measure, weigh or clamp the lids down. If you must bury dead pets or small livestock, sprinkle quicklime over the bodies before covering them. Avoid throwing leftover meat into the underbrush.
This will hasten the breakdown process and lessen the smell of decay.
Food is frequently left outside for dogs or wild animal pals. Sure, it’s nice and quick to leave a bowl of kibble out for Fluffy to munch on throughout the day, but passing coyotes will also find those crunchy morsels delicious. They quickly move toward the food bar after spotting them from a distance. They’ll probably also take a sip from the water dish if they’re thirsty.
While at it, they might also observe how appetizing tiny puppies and fat, sluggish house cats seem. In that vein…
Protect Animals and Children
Setting up better protections for your animals is the greatest method to prevent coyotes from hurting them. This may entail better fencing for outdoor animals and indoor pet ownership.
Let’s start with pets as we were just discussing them.
Barn cats reduce the number of mice in your barns but are extremely susceptible to coyote predation. Furthermore, populations of wild birds are utterly decimated by outdoor cats. If you must leave your cat outside, be careful to bring it inside as soon as dusk falls.
Ensure that outdoor animal enclosures are coyote-proof, particularly chicken coops, rabbit hutches, and goat pens. Ensure the yard is adequately fenced in if you let little dogs run free in it. Rollers can also be used to top tall fences. These keep huge cats, foxes, and other animals from scaling the tops, including coyotes.
Barn cats are one of these animals that need protecting. You can transfer them inside if you know there is a pack around. Cats are too good of a meal for coyotes.
In particular, avoid letting young children play unsupervised outside before dawn or after dusk. You should also instruct some older children on what to do if a coyote gets too close for comfort. Early training in self-defense and first aid can be very helpful.
Get a Guard Animal
Do you remember how we said that when wolves are present, coyotes stay away from them? They’ll also stay to themselves if there are large, capable guard dogs around. Some individuals keep llamas or alpacas as security animals because they may also be noisy and fierce.
I personally prefer dogs to alpacas, but that is a question of personal opinion. Be sure to choose a large breed well-known for being protective and trainable. Instead of collies or retrievers, go for shepherds and mastiffs.
What Not to Do
Please refrain from poisoning or shooting the coyotes in your vicinity. Seriously, that’s not how to deal with coyotes. You ought to be able to coexist peacefully with them if you follow the precautions mentioned above. Despite our perceived annoyances, these animals are important species for the local ecology, and as such, they deserve respect.
Keep in mind that nothing happens in nature in a vacuum. Every single thing is connected, and they each play a crucial part. There are many strategies to deal with coyotes so they won’t cause as many issues around your property as you’ve read here.
Call some humane animal control experts for assistance on how to deal with coyotes if you’re still having issues. They ought to be able to capture the animals and move them far enough away that they won’t annoy you any longer. The coyotes can continue participating in the vast life cycle. Still, they must respect your cats and chickens and leave them alone.