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In the recent months there have been concerns raised with the sporadic sightings of coyotes within the city limits. Contacts have been made with the USDA Wildlife Services as well as the State of Illinois DNR for consultation and direction. The sightings have been categorized as just that, “sightings” or “observations”.

 

The best way to handle the presence of coyotes is by being educated on the situation as well as understanding the natural habits of the urban coyote.

  • Coyotes are found in every state in the United States but Hawaii and secondly inhabit most urban areas.
  • Urban coyotes still adhere to their natural diet. Being omnivores their source of food is vast, they will seek animal prey, fruits and vegetables. They are also opportunistic and will gladly eat open human refuse and pet food left out.
  • Coyotes have little interest in humans. Humans and pets are not on their natural diet and like most non-domesticated animals have no reason or desire to be near humans.
  • Human behavior is the main source of wild animal interactions. An abundance of waste attracts rodents which in turn attracts their number one predator, coyotes.
  • Leaving pet food outside is an attractant that goes without saying. If they are able to get an easy meal without working for it, they will. This habit again attracts rodents. A buildup of food at bird feeders will attract coyotes as well as rodents that are their primary natural food source.
  • Coyotes are not 100% nocturnal in nature. They hunt in the day and night, however in urban areas most sightings are reported to occur at dawn, dusk or evening hours. The urban coyote has adjusted it’s hunting patterns to reduce their interactions with humans. Daytime sightings are more frequent in the spring as they are hunting to provide for their newly born pups.
  • Trapping and/or killing coyotes is not an effective way to reduce their long term numbers. Numbers will almost always rebound and often increase.
  • Coyotes that have begun to lose their fear of humans have typically done so because they have become aware that there is an easy source of food whether intentional or not. In these cases, “hazing” is the best means of deterring their presence.
  • “Hazing” is any combination of actions taken to discourage the coyote from being relaxed in this environment. Making noise (yelling, clapping, banging on pots and pans), raising your arms and acting “big”, using a hose or squirt bottle and throwing rocks or small items in their general direction (not at them) are all common ways to make a coyote to feel less comfortable. An animal that is persistently hazed will eventually cease to return to that area.

Below are links to sites that can provide additional information.

  • United States Department of Agriculture, Living with wildlife information:

https://www.aphis.usda.gov/publications/wildlife_damage/content/printable_version/fs_living_with_wildlife.pdf

  • Humane Society of the United States, Management and Coexistence information:

https://www.humanesociety.org/sites/default/files/docs/HSUS%20Coyote%20Mgt%20Plan%202019.pdf

  • Urban Coyote Research Project, An extensive long term study on urban coyotes:

https://urbancoyoteresearch.com/

Urban areas have and will continue to be home to many species of wildlife. Behavioral understanding on the part of human population is key to coexistence. Generally speaking, wild animals do not desire to have contact with humans. Animals are opportunistic, the presence of food and water, without the challenges of hunting, will condition the animals to become more acclimated to and in turn, less fearful of the human population. Reduction of food and constant hazing are the most effective means of expelling animals.  

With community effort and understanding the issue at hand can be managed. Your help is greatly appreciated.

City of Lincoln

CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)

Information is available on the following sites:
Logan County Current Statistics

Memorial Health System  - Includes daily statistics for MHS and a COVID-19 Risk Screening

Local Business Resources
Logan County Department of Public Health
Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH)
Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

 

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City Hall
700 Broadway Street
Lincoln, Illinois 62656

(217)735-2815

 

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