What to Know
- Coyotes are now raising their pups and can be more territorial as they guard their mates, dens, pups and food sources
- As people and their pets spend more time outdoors, the possibility of a coyote encounter increases
- Coyotes often follow routines, so if you encounter one, you should avoid the area next time
A coyote family is raising a large litter of pups in an isolated area near LaGuardia Airport.
Wild Dog Foundation founder Frank Vincente tells the Daily News that eight coyote pups were initially spotted in Queens. But it appears only five of them have survived.
Vincente says he shooed the mother and two of the pups off a road last week.
He believes the mother may be the coyote seen last year on the rooftop of a bar in Long Island City.
Coyotes have been spotted periodically in New York City since the 1990s. Experts estimated last year that the population was probably at least in the teens.
The animals are generally shy. But wildlife experts recommend precautions: Don't feed coyotes, and secure your trash and pets.
Here are some tips to stay safe:
- Coyotes can be found in any open space, parks, neighborhoods and even commercial areas. As people and their pets spend more time outdoors, the possibility of a coyote encounter increases.
- Coyotes may try to escort you out of an area to protect their pups or food sources when you encounter them on a trail. Humans may perceive this behavior as stalking, which is usually not the case.
- Note where and when you have an encounter with a coyote. Coyotes often follow routines. Avoid this area in the future if the encounter was negative.
- They may also view your pet as prey.
- Never feed coyotes—it is illegal to feed coyotes in most places. Feeding endangers your family and neighbors as it lures coyotes into neighborhoods.
- Keep unattended cats and dogs indoors or in completely enclosed runs, especially at night, and do not assume that a fence will keep a coyote out of your back yard.
- Accompany your leashed pet outside. Make sure you turn on lights if it is dark to check your back yard for unexpected wildlife.
- Keep dogs on short leashes while walking outside; the Division of Wildlife recommends a leash no longer than 6 feet.
- Leave noisemakers on hand to scare away coyotes that may enter your yard, such as whistles and horns.
- Don't run away or turn your back on a coyote.
- Do not allow a coyote to get in between you and your pet or child—keep children close to you.
- Yell, clap hands, blow a whistle and try to make yourself look larger if you have a close encounter with a coyote.