“Earlier this month, a woman living in the Leisure World retirement community opened her screen door to pick up her newspaper, only to watch a coyote scamper inside, grab her cat, and run back out,” washingtontimes.com reports. I am fully aware that shooting anything in an urban environment is an inherently dangerous business, on several levels. As much as you love little fluffy, as much as you might want to emulate Texas Governor Rick Perry’s LCP prowess, popping a coyote’s clogs with your trusty home carry piece could violate city ordinances and take out a two-legged bystander. The legally sensible solution to coyote infestation is to . . .
call animal control. Let the experts get outwitted by the animals – if they get there in time. As you might imagine, that’s not working out very well in beautiful, sunny Orange County, California.
Stories abound in nearby Orange County of dogs and cats snatched off leashes and plucked out of backyards a few feet away from their horrified owners. Mangled pet carcasses turn up on front lawns, often identifiable only by their tails.
The story doesn’t go into the possibility of a coyote attacking a baby, small child or tax-paying OC resident. But such things do – are – happening, With increasing frequency. Especially in SoCal. The obvious solution: shoot the damn things before they wander into town and ring your doorbell pretending to sell Girl Scout cookies.
Oh noes! Shoot coyotes! You OFWG rural folks may trap/shoot/kill animals with your guns just for the taste of it (shudder), but we city folks would never shoot an animal simply doing what animals do!
In rural America, the solution is obvious: Trap and shoot the varmints. In suburbia, however, local governments are increasingly adopting a “coexistence” philosophy promoted by animal rights groups that rejects lethal control in favor of education and behavior modification.
When coyotes get too close, groups like the Humane Society and San Francisco-based Project Coyote recommend hazing: Make noise, stomp your feet, wave your arms, shoot them with water guns, and throw things in order to teach the animals that humans are dangerous.
“Hazing is just a way to remind coyotes that people are something they need to be wary of,” said Project Coyote wildlife ecologist Ashley DeLaup. “It’s something that makes people seem unpredictable again. Because right now, we’re pretty predictable.”
In California, however, hazing is facing a backlash from those who say the ruckus hasn’t stopped the coyotes from feasting on their pets. A group called Coyote Watch is calling on state and local governments to quit relying on individuals to scare off the predators and take a more active role in combatting the coyote infestation.
“Active” meaning trapping and killing the varmints? Yup. I guess a coyote coexistence advocate is just a cat owner whose feline hasn’t been eaten yet. Last week the Seal Beach city council voted 4-0 to hire a predator control company to do what predator control companies do.
Meanwhile, will OC residents tool-up to protect their pets? You’re joking right?
“They are killing our animals. They are scaring us. I go out every morning with rocks in my pockets, tennis shoes on, mace on my neck, a whistle on my neck and a foghorn on my leash, and I still don’t feel safe,” Ms. Warner said last week in comments before the Seal Beach City Council.