Keeping your pets safe during coyote mating season


ST. LOUIS – Late February to early March is the period for coyote mating season, which means we have a better chance of running into them in our yards. In the spring, they start having their pups and will also be actively looking for food.

Dan Zarlenga, Missouri Department of Conservation spokesman, said the good news is people are not on the dinner menu for coyotes. If you see a coyote, keep your distance and remove all temptations from your yard. Remove any outdoor pet food, possibly take down bird feeders, because the seed that drops might attract rodents, which could then attract coyotes.

Zarlenga said you also want to do what they call “harassment” towards the coyote.

“Do anything you can to make the coyote feel uncomfortable. Whether that’s screaming at it, yelling at it, people blow air horns, throw rocks, blow hoses, and bang pots and pans,” he said.

You especially want to take these measures if you have a small dog, because coyotes tend to see them as a threat. Zarlenga recommends not losing site of your dog when you let them out at night and if you go on a walk, keep them on a leash.

Zarlenga said they are having an uptick in calls about coyotes right now.

Coyotes live in places like common areas in a subdivision, parks, and golf courses. Coyotes have even been spotted in downtown St. Louis around Forest Park and Tower Grove Park.

For more information:

Living with Wildlife: Urban Coyotes Video
Living with Wildlife: Urban Coyotes|YouTube

Coyote Control
Coyote Control|Missouri Department of Conservation

Coyotes Online Field Guide
Coyote|MDC Discover Nature

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