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Coyotes spotted in Greene County neighborhoods during peak mating season

Published: Mar. 4, 2021 at 9:55 PM CST
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GREENE COUNTY, Mo. (KY3) - If you have small outdoor pets, you might want to keep a close eye on them. Experts say coyotes are more active right now because it is the peak of their mating season.

You might think coyotes are only something you would see in rural areas, but they have even been spotted recently in neighborhoods like some just west of Springfield. The wild canines roam from the woods right to your yard.

While they may just be a little curious, experts say they can cause a couple issues if they make their way to your yard.

”They are opportunistic predators so maybe a small pet, a young livestock, that occasionally is in their food range and they may go after that,” Francis Skalicky with the Missouri Department of Conservation said. “You got to think a cat or a small

These wild animals are primarily nocturnal, but their peak activity is right around sunset. So if you do have a pet that needs to go out at night, you may want to use some extra caution.

”Go with it. Don’t just send it out,” Skalicky said. “Try to be as vigilant as possible.”

While they may feed mostly on smaller animals like mice, experts say your smaller pets can definitely be a target. But that is not the only thing they may be after.

”They’re omnivores, they’re not just carnivores” Skalicky said. “So they’re also after your trash can. That pet food that’s in that dish that you leave out overnight. So make sure that’s not available.”

You will also want to be cautious when you leave your garbage out.

”Make sure your trash can is secured,” Skalicky said. “Just make sure they don’t have a reason to start hanging around your place.”

And if you do see one stumble into your yard, there are ways to get rid of it.

”You can definitely scare it away” Skalicky said. “Make noise. Do anything you can, do everything you can to make sure that coyote knows it’s not welcome there it needs to move on.”

You do not need to be afraid to go for an evening walk though, The Missouri Department of Conservation says coyotes are not really harmful to humans. In rural areas you can hunt them, but inside cities like Springfield you cannot shoot at them.

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