Dangers Of Coyotes
Coyotes are by no means rare or exotic creatures. Just about everyone has heard of a coyote, given that they are pretty common in all parts of the world.
However, this doesn’t mean that you know everything there is to possibly know about the creature. And more importantly, it doesn’t even mean that you know everything you need to stay safe from them.
Heck, you might not even know that they pose a threat to you. Well, they do! They also pose a threat to children and other animals that you might be keeping around the home.
While coyotes belong to the dog species and look similar to that of dogs, you’d be surprised just how different the two are. Coyotes usually appear with a grayish-brown coat and have white fur under the belly and neck.
These creatures are extremely cunning and smart with the innate ability to adapt to any environment. This is probably one of the main reasons that they are so common throughout all parts of the world.
They literally possess the ability to take any situation and make the most of it. It doesn’t hurt that they’re not picky eaters.
In fact, they’ll eat just about anything. From garbage to roadkill, you can rest assured that is a coyote gets hungry enough, it’ll eat it. They also aren’t too selective when it comes to habitation either.
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Normal Coyote Behavior
It probably isn’t a startling revolution to learn that coyotes can be dangerous to humans, pets, and kids. You’ve likely heard a news story about someone being attacked while walking a trail or camping.
However, seeing one in your backyard or on the street is probably rarer of an occasion that you would imagine. This is not to say that it’s not possible depending on your residence, but it will still be somewhat rare.
Knowing the facts about coyotes, their behaviors, and what to do in the event that you encounter one could help you respond in the right manner. Responding in the right manner could be life-saving, as these creatures can tend to get pretty vicious in certain situations.
Regardless, knowing this information will make you a more informed individual. This is something that’ll come in more than handy if you commonly find yourself in the wild or just happen to live in an area with a more common and prolific coyote population.
Spotting a coyote is actually rare of an occasion than most people might think. And, one reason for this is because coyotes are nocturnal. Which in part means, that they prefer to travel and hunt at night.
They only like to come out during the day when it is absolutely necessary. If they need to change habitats or move to better hunting grounds they might come out during the day, otherwise, they’ll stick to their nighttime behaviors.
That being said, if you do see a coyote during the day, it is likely that you aren’t in any danger because he’ll be scared of you. Now, this won’t always be the case, but it should be the case 90% percent of the time.
Being out during the day is already awkward for the creature and encountering a human will only throw him off his feet more.
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Abnormal Coyote Behavior
Regarding the information above, there are times when coyotes can become used to humans. And, when this happens this is when they pose the biggest threat. That being said, this is a process known as habituation.
Habituation is the process of the coyote becoming more and more familiar with the human. How does this happen?
This happens when people feed them. Some individuals might feed them just like they would a deer or a pigeon, but it is also possible to unknowingly feed a coyote.
For instance, if you live in an area with a big population and aren’t securing your garbage or just leaving food lying around outside, a coyote will likely take it if he comes across it.
Whatever the situation is, this is when the fear of humans lessens for the coyote. In these situations, the coyote begins to associate humans with food. This is when the animal can start to act tame or even aggressive in some situations.
This is just one of the ways that coyotes can act abnormally towards humans.
The second way that they can act abnormally is through an actual attack. These attacks are extremely rare, but it is not to say that they have never happened or won’t happen to you.
It is also not to say that this is something that you need to fear, but it is something that you need to be aware of!
You also need to know how to react. Once again, these attacked go back to feeding habits. A coyote will likely not attack unless it has begun to associate food with humans.
All in all, the very best way to prevent these attacks by preventing habituation, which means don’t feed coyotes or leave food out where they can get to it. You’ll likely know right away if some creature is getting into your trash, and this is when you know you need to make changes.
People have also been attacked by coyotes when they were trying to rescue a pet from a coyote. Coyotes will attack other animals so this is something that you need to be aware of as well.
When You Might See A Coyote
There are several situations when you might see a coyote. Heck, believe it or not, you might spot a coyote while walking down the street with your kids.
While this is extremely rare, it is not completely unheard of. This is especially true for individuals that live in areas with a high coyote population.
If you are a frequent camper or hiker it won’t be uncommon to run into a coyote, as they are extremely fond of the woods. If you walk your dogs in parks or wooded areas, you might run into coyotes because these are just some of the common areas where they like to hang out.
Knowing how to act in these situations could mean the difference between an attack and just a close encounter.
What To Do If You See A Coyote
Knowing how to react when you spot a coyote could be the difference between an attack and just a random meeting. First off, you need to know if you live in an area with a high coyote population. This is something that you can determine by speaking with a local ranger or law enforcement.
That being said, if you do live in an area with a high population, you likely already know it because you’ve probably heard about someone being attacked.
Living in an area with a high population does not mean that you need to live in fear or be afraid every time you go out. It just means that you need to be aware of your surrounding and know that a meeting is possible.
That being said, if you run into a coyote during the day, you likely won’t have to do much. Coyotes are nocturnal creatures and should really only be out during the night. If they are out doing the day it is likely that they’ll already be disoriented and will want to avoid an encounter.
Always Maintain Eye Contact – Regardless of the situation, when running into a coyote, you’ll always want to maintain eye contact. Don’t look away or just simply try to ignore the creature.
Coyotes should generally be scared of you and won’t want a confrontation. Looking at them in the eye will be an excellent way to assert and maintain dominance.
However, while you are looking at them in the eye, you’ll want to make sure that you are backing away or moving towards safety. Just remember you can’t outrun a coyote, so you’ll have to get somewhere where he can’t go.
Make Yourself Look Big – It is also always a good idea to make yourself look as big as possible when encountering a coyote. One of the best ways to do this is by holding a backpack or some other device above your head.
Make Noise – Coyotes should generally be frightened of you, so making threatening noises will only help to deter them from attacking. You’ll only want to do this though if you sense that the coyote is coming towards you. There is no sense in just yelling at a coyote if you happen to run into one on the street or in the woods. Only do this if you feel threatened.
Throwing Sticks – Along with yelling, throwing sticks is another great way to deter coyotes. Once again, you’ll only want to do this if you feel threatened. Don’t just throw sticks at a random coyote that you encounter because this could actually incite an attack.
There is simply no denying that coyotes could potentially pose a threat to you, your children, or your animals. The best course of action is to be prepared, and that is exactly what the information above will do for you.
As far as pets go, you’ll always want to make sure that your pets are leashed and house in predator-proof locations.
If walking with your pet, you’ll want to use a leash no longer than 6 inches, so that you can always maintain control over your pet. I hope I was able to explain the dangers of coyotes and how to handle it.