Coyote sightings continue as residents post on their Facebook pages or text friends about their latest encounter seeing the coyote running across a lawn, or standing on a front porch of a local home. I saw one run down the sidewalk on Beachwood behind Larchmont last week at about 4:30 pm as some young boys played on the front lawn across the street: the coyote ran up the walkway to a house and disappeared into foliage on the side. He (or she) was fast and well built – more like a small German Shephard than the the scrawny animal we expect to see.
With reports of one pet dog killed, another dog caught then dropped by the coyote, and a golfer reportedly being chased by a coyote on the Wilshire Country Club greens, residents are frustrated that this wildlife seems to now be a regular fixture of the Hancock Park and Windsor Square environs. We contacted the LA Animal Services Wildlife Program’s Officer Gregory Randall to learn more.
“Every few years we get a coyote or two in the Hancock Park area. The last incident was in 2007 when three coyotes were active there and before that it was 2003 with five coyotes. Animal Control does not trap and remove coyotes,” Officer Gregory Randall shared. “We do take reports, undertake onsite evaluations, and educate residents on how to make the environment less attractive to coyotes,” he said. “Eventually the coyote(s) will get killed by a car, become injured or sick, or trapped in an enclosure. If they’re caught that way we can take them to a wildlife rehab center. If a neighborhood wants to to get rid of a coyote, the only way to do it is to hire a pest control or wildlife management company approved by the City, and have them trap and release.”
It just so happens, that that is exactly what local Windsor Square residents David and Bob Schneiderman decided to do. We learned that yesterday they contracted with Allstar Animal Removal to set four traps in the area to try to capture the coyote. The traps are large and baited with hamburger meat and hidden in wildlife-desirable locations. Should the coyote enter his/her paw will activate the door to close. The traps will be checked daily, and moved as needed. Allstar assured the Schneidermans that should other animals become trapped in the cage they will be safely removed.
“We are thrilled with the response from our neighborhood,” David Schneiderman told the Buzz. “We didn’t expect to get the outpouring of response and financial contributions from the community that we have received already in the first day.” Residents who would like to help pay for the almost $3,000 fee to trap the coyote(s) can email Schneiderman directly.
Officer Randall has been out to interview people who have sighted the coyote(s) and look at the locations. He said that coyotes and other wild animals are attracted to many things often found around an urban enclave like ours. “They love fertilizer made with cow manure. They go after pet food, or on a construction site the food that may be left around by workers.” He noted that coyotes will chase down an unleashed small dog or a cat as its in their DNA to hunt small critters, not necessarily because they are ‘hungry’. He also noted that coyotes almost never try to attack humans and that they should be scared off with large movements (waving of hands) and loud noises (yelling, using a blow horn or banging pans.)
Randall said they believe it may be a single coyote who is roaming the neighborhood. It is reported to have a patch of mange on its head (which once scratched a lot can become infected and result in death within 200 days) and may have an injured rear limb.
LA Animal Services has an Encounters with Coyotes Facebook page that gives detailed information on what to do if you encounter a coyote, and how to safeguard your yard from attracting coyotes and other wild animals.If a coyote is trapped, killed or injured in your yard, call the local LA Animal Shelter for assistance: 213-485-8855 (for area codes 90004, 90020) or 213-485-0303 (for zip codes 90005, 90010, 90019) If you would like to make a report of seeing a coyote to aid LA Animal Services in getting a better idea of the coyote’s whereabouts, call 323-225-9453.