Sep 4, 2006

Coyotes In Troutdale- A Fact Of Life

From the Gresham Outlook here's a story about coyote sightings in Troutdale and Gresham. Coyotes, people adjust to changing urban boundaries

I haven't seen one myself, but we hear their howling most late summer evenings in the general direction of Beaver Creek and the Strebin berry field on Troutdale Rd. Contrary to popular opinion, coyotes are not dangerous, unless you're a grasshopper, rat or mouse, or road kill. Yes, small domestic animals such as cats or small dogs may be at risk, but only if their human owners fail to take common sense precautions.

The Audubon Society lists the following suggestions to keep your pets safe from coyotes:

- Never deliberately feed a coyote or other wild mammal.

- Securely cover garbage cans and compost bins.

- Remove fallen fruit from yards.

- Eliminate opportunities for rats to breed in and around your yard.

- Never deliberately approach a coyote and teach children to respect all wildlife from a distance.

- Keep house pets indoors and allow only controlled access to the outdoors (fenced yards and leashes.)

- To prevent coyotes from entering your yard, consider removing unnecessary brush, installing a motion-sensitive lighting system or a coyote-proof fence. To be effective, fences must be at least 6 feet tall, have no openings greater than 4 inches and should extend flush with the ground.

- If you do not want coyotes around your home, let them know that they are not welcome. If you see a coyote, shout, make noise and wave your arms.
(FYI this last tip also works well with door to door petitioners)

I had a single encounter in the Portland area several years ago. I was taking a run through Portland's Powell Butte Nature Park when a coyote popped out of the brush not ten feet away from me. I did a double take, the coyote did a double take, but neither of us stopped our casual rate of jogging. After both of us jogged and watched each other for about thirty seconds, the coyote ambled back into the brush.

As far as I'm concerned, unleashed domestic dogs are much more dangerous than a coyote.

Technorati tags: Coyotes, Troutdale, Gresham, Gresham Outlook

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