PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Wildlife experts say coyotes are moving into our area. They’re getting “bolder” and they’re being blamed for several attacks in other cities.
A police officer in Columbus, Ohio was forced to taze a coyote after it came out of the woods and bit another officer who was stopped along the roadside.
A New Hampshire man was bitten on his arm during a struggle with a coyote who attacked his son. He killed the animal with his bare hands.
Henry Kacpryzk, curator with the Pittsburgh Zoo, says coyotes are moving into the eastern part of the country. Some may have rabies but they’re getting used to being around humans.
“Humans are presenting little conflict with them and they’re getting comfortable, they’re getting closer to them, emboldened by them,” said Kacpryzk.
“Coyotes in the city, that’s crazy,” said one resident. “But nature will fill a vacuum every time.”
Even though coyotes are mostly solitary and hunt at night, they are here in the Pittsburgh area.
One resident said he’s seen some people in Highland Park report sightings, but he hasn’t seen any himself.
A Stanton Heights resident says he’s seen photos in the neighborhood, but hasn’t seen any personally.
One thing about a coyote — you won’t see one unless it wants you to see it, but like other wild animals they can be attracted to your neighborhood by open garbage.
Kacpryzk says coyotes are more dangerous in packs and are known to go after small mammals, including dogs and even young children. The animals are also known to be a carrier of rabies. In case you encounter one, it might run.
But if not? Kacpryzksays you should raise your arms, jerk forward and keep doing that until the coyote retreats.
So far, no coyote attacks have been reported in the Pittsburgh area, but as the animals continue to flourish, it could only be a matter of time.