Urban coyotes have developed a different lifestyle from coyotes in rural environments. Cities support larger populations of animals in close proximity to people for the following reasons: 1) Increased access to food. People provide easy access to large supplies of food by leaving pet food, bird seed, unsecure compost or trash and fallen fruits in yards. Unintentional and intentional feeding of coyotes encourages bold behavior and increases aggression towards people and pets. Intentional feeding makes people a target source of food. 2) Increased access to water. Year-round water supplies in cities from man-made ponds, lakes, flood control channels, pet water dishes, pools, fountains etc. increase water for prey animals and coyotes. 3) Increased potential shelter. Parks, golf courses, buildings, vehicles, sheds, decks, crawl spaces, overgrown vegetation, among others increase the amount and variability of coyote shelters. Steps must be taken to address: safety concerns, misconceptions, and appropriate responses to potential threats to human safety. Coyotes can easily remain close to people, pets, homes and businesses without detection. 4) Increased exposure to people. Regular interaction between coyotes and people without negative consequences encourages habituation or increases comfort levels with human contact. People are, or may be, disregarded as a source of danger. 5) Increased exposure to pets. Pets are a normal part of an urban landscape. To urban coyotes they are considered other animals in their habitat. Pets can be considered, potential prey, or a potential competitor in coyote territory.
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No. Coyotes are considered non-game wildlife with no special protections (FG 4150).
Yes. However, it is best to leave trapping up to the trained professional. You are not required to procure a trapping license, but you are required to abide by regulations set forth in the Use of Traps T-14 CCR 465.5.
The trapper must be currently licensed with the CDFW (passing a certified trapping examination). Hired trappers must follow all rules and regulations set forth in T-14 CCR 465.5 and FG 4005.
Yes, as long as they are doing so on HOA owned land or with property owner permission.
No, unless authorized for a specific research purpose.
No. Coyotes that are legal to trap must be immediately put to death or released. Relocating a problem coyote is not an option because it only moves the problem to someone else’s neighborhood. It is also not sound wildlife management practice due to potential disease transfer and disrupting the ecosystem, potentially causing an imbalance in the predator-prey cycle.
No. Hazing, otherwise known as “Aversive Conditioning,” is a process used to teach the coyote to fear humans. It is a good thing in that its intent is to save the animal’s life. When coyotes become too habituated, and lose their natural fear of humans, they can become a threat to public safety. Basically, “A Fed Coyote is a Dead Coyote”. Some urban coyotes become comfortable in close proximity to people. To safely coexist it’s important to modify this behavior. Urban coyote behavior needs to be reshaped to encourage coyotes to avoid contact with humans and pets. Hazing is the process that facilitates this change and is by necessity a community response to encounters with coyotes. Hazing employs immediate use of deterrents to move an animal out of an area or discourage undesirable behavior or activity. Deterrents include loud noises, spraying water, bright lights, throwing objects and shouting. Hazing does not harm or damage animals, humans or property. Behavioral change also involves human activities such as how to identify and remove attractants and how to responsibly protect pets.
Intentionally or unintentionally providing food for coyotes causes the coyote to lose their fear of humans and become habituated. This leads to changing the coyote’s feeding behavior causing them to become dependent on humans for food; increasing habituation, leading the coyote to its eventual death.
While the CDFW is NOT a wildlife rehabilitator, they recognize the value of rehabilitative care for individual wild animals. The CDFW works with interested agencies and organizations - volunteer and otherwise - to ensure high quality practices in the rehabilitation of sick, injured, orphaned, or displaced California wildlife.
The information was sourced from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (https://wildlife.ca.gov/Keep-Me-Wild/Coyote).