Residents of a densely populated neighbourhood in Oromocto, N.B., say they are taking precautions after a coyote attacked a deer in their backyards on Saturday.
The coyote did not appear intimidated when people tried to chase it off. Wildlife officials were called, they lured the animal away from the yard and shot it dead.
Kelly Harris caught some of the incident on tape. It shows how close the animal was to houses — decks, outdoor fire pits and lawn furniture are just metres from the coyote as it eats the deer.
Harris has pets and young children and she worries for their safety outside.
"Since the coyote warnings had happened, we have not let them go out unattended for the last month anyways," she said Sunday.
"We haven't really been letting the kids play out in the backyard as it was, which proved to be a good thing."
Carry a big stick
Sheila Degaust's home overlooks the spot were the coyote was found. She awoke to see the animal eating the dead deer at 8:30 a.m.
"It was bigger than a big dog," she said Sunday.
She found it disconcerting that the animal appeared comfortable and not afraid of people. It has caused her to rethink her own behaviour in her neighbourhood.
"I wouldn't go out at dawn or dusk, or at night walking by myself. And I would probably want to be carrying a stick or something to fend off a coyote," she said.
Three small dogs were attacked last month in Oromocto. Officials suspected coyotes and warned residents to be cautious.
Town officials are urging people to continue to be wary of possible coyote encounters. Officials offered tips for dealing with coyotes:
- Never approach or touch a coyote.
- Always give it an escape route.
- Back away and remain calm.
- Do not turn your back on, or run from, a coyote.
- If the coyote advances, respond aggressively by waving your arms, shouting, throwing rocks or sticks, and maintaining eye contact.
- Carry a flashlight and a loud alarm or whistle to scare off coyotes.
- Do not let dogs chase coyotes.