Our Trouble With Coyotes


More than once I’ve written about the coyote howls we hear late at night. When coyotes howl together it’s blood curdling! We keep Doppler on a short leash, but other than that didn’t really concern ourselves with coyotes until recently.

From the OC Register:

Three children have been bitten and another has been scratched in an unusual spate of recent coyote attacks in Irvine, according to state officials.

All of the incidents resulting in minor injuries have occurred in the last six weeks in a two-mile area of the Portola Springs region in northeastern Irvine.

Nine coyotes have been caught and euthanized in connection with the attacks, California Department of Fish and Wildlife Capt. Rebecca Hartman said.

Portola Springs! That’s where I live. Helaine, Doppler and I walked past one a few months ago near our community pool. Back then Animal Control said not to worry. Not anymore.

The coyotes are real now. Their howls are scarier than ever.

This afternoon, still unbathed, unshaven and wearing pajamas, I answered a knock at the door. I opened it to see a man wearing an employee ID badge around his neck.

“I’m Steven Louie,” he said. “I’m a producer for NBC Nightly News.”

“I’m Geoff Fox,” I said. “A meteorologist for KMIR, the NBC station in Palm Springs.”

Mine was the first door he randomly knocked on. We were both surprised at the NBC coincidence.

I brought him in, showed him my studio then pointed him toward the house of someone who’d been scratched. They chose not to talk. I’m not sure he got his story today.

It was only a few nights ago Helaine and I were walking near the pool and watched a police kennel truck drive by. We are being looked out for. That’s definitely appreciated.

It’s weird our coyotes would be a topic for the national news. It’s sad because the coyotes were obviously here first. However, once they lose their fear of humans, as these seem to, there’s really no choice.

Photo credit: “Coyote vs Dog” by NicktonChance encounterUploaded by Mariomassone. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

3 thoughts on “Our Trouble With Coyotes”

  1. Just wondering, Geoff—you mention the incidents, but say nothing about Rabies or Rabies testing. Around here, any contact made is always cause for worry, and the animal, when/if captured is always tested for same. Those folks scratched would probably need to get the series of shots—if in CT.
    We are seeing more bears than coyote this year—yet we continue to build and limit the space for these creatures.

  2. Here in CT, we saw the story on the news last night. I immediately thought of your posts about the howling…..be safe!

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