It’s reported that the coyote population is booming in Florida. The article that I’m reading does not tell me why but it is probably because of Covid. There have been many instances of wildlife encroaching upon human settlements because they’ve become quieter due to social distancing and lockdowns. Temporarily, the world reverted to a bygone age in respect of wildlife.
Click the infographic below to see it bigger if you are on a desktop computer.
Coyotes become habituated to people although they are inherently timid. They are very adaptable and are often seen in the urban environment and even on the beaches of Florida. In the video below you see a melanistic coyote wandering through a golf course while the members play the game oblivious to its presence.
They can eat almost anything that humans eat and are very good it eating their cats and small dogs as well. Some outside domestic cats succeed in escaping a coyote attack but often they don’t. They eat fruit, nuts, seeds, pet food, garbage, rodents and, as mentioned, pets. They will also eat feral and stray cats.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has held a coyote seminar to provide advice to Floridians on how to deal with them. They’ve been seen in all 67 counties of the state. And they arrive by crossing bridges, roads and rivers. They are good swimmers. They are a resourceful animal.
Angeline Barker, a biologist with FWC said: “I don’t want to sugarcoat it for you. Coyotes and other wildlife, other predators will absolutely predate pets if they are free-ranging”. In Florida, there is always a debate on how to protect wildlife from cat predation and cats from coyote predation! Nature’s way.
Apparently coyote sightings have been reported more often in the urban portions of Broward County. It seems that some residents believe that coyotes attack people and therefore they are fearful of them. This isn’t the case. Is the opposite in fact: coyotes are frightened of people which is why there are very few coyote bites on people and it’s why they can be hazed i.e. frightened off with the techniques referred to in the video below provided by FWC.
Note: This is a video from another website. Sometimes they are deleted at source which stops them working on this site. If that has happened, I apologise but I have no control over it.
The infographic on this page is also provided by this useful organisation. My thanks.
Here are a couple of diverging comments on Facebook from Floridians:
“The population of coyotes is growing rapidly down the kissimmee park road area, I hear the pups yapping at night and see adult coyotes during the day at least 3 times a month. When I start missing cats…is when I will start popping them off!! – Carey Wright.
“They are important to the environment. It’s not their fault. Humans have put them in this position.” – Nancy Anna.
Below are some more articles on coyotes in America. On my reckoning they are probably the major reason why far more domestic cats are kept full-time inside the home in America compared to the UK for instance.