What can you do if you spot a coyote in Waltham?
In the wake of recent reports of coyote sightings in Waltham, Waltham Police say there are several steps you take to deal with the animals.
Keep in mind, however, that coyotes are not typically a threat to humans because they are naturally afraid of people, according to the Massachusetts Department of Fish & Wildlife. Waltham Police Lt. Joe Brooks said, however, cats and other animals in Waltham have fallen victim to coyotes in the past.
STEPS TO TAKE/NOT TAKE IF YOU SEE A COYOTE
- Residents who spot coyotes in their area should make as much noise as possible, said Brooks, who has extensive knowledge of coyotes. Hopefully, he said, this will scare the coyote off.
- Residents can shout, jump up and down and shake their keys to make noise to scare coyotes off, Brooks said.
- “They need to make noise as they can,” Brooks said.
- The DFW recommends additional ways to deal with coyotes.
- Authorities and residents are prohibited from capturing coyotes and relocating them solely because they are in a residential area, according to the DFW website.
- Coyotes can only be removed from an area if they are deemed a threat to humans, according to the DFW.
- Police, however, can also take reports of coyote sightings, Brooks said.
STEPS TO TAKE TO AVOID ATTRACTING COYOTES
- Residents should avoid feeding coyotes, Brooks said. Feeding them encourages them to return to the area in the future, he said.
- Also, residents should avoid tying their animals outside around dawn or dusk when coyotes are most likely to be searching for food, Brooks said.
- Also, avoid leaving animal food outside, Brooks said.
The advice comes amid reports of coyote sightings in Waltham. Coyotes, however, have previously been reported in Waltham, Brooks said.
One Waltham resident told Waltham Patch she had seen coyotes near her condominium unit at the Briar Glen complex on three occasions. The resident, who asked Patch to withhold her name, said she saw a coyote around 1 a.m. a month ago as she was standing outside her condo.
“I was scared of him and he was scared of me and he ran back in,” she said. She said she also has had two other coyote sightings.
Waltham Patch Twitter followers have reported seeing coyotes in the Island neighborhood near the Newton line as well as the areas of Fairfax and Whitman roads. Brooks said there is no part of Waltham coyotes avoid.
“They are seen all over the city,” Brooks said, adding that sightings are common this time of year.
While there have been reports of coyotes, foxes could also be roaming the city, according to an online bulletin from the Waltham Animal Control department.
Thankfully, there has never been a report of a coyote attacking a human in Waltham, Brooks said.
With development and residences surrounding their wooded habitats, Brooks said people should learn to live amidst them.
“We’ve come to a point… where we really have to learn how to live with wildlife,” Brooks said.
Have you seen the coyote in the area? Let us know in our comments section below, upload your photos here and add the location to our interactive map!