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City of Barrie addresses concerns over coyote encounters

A coyote is seen in this generic image. (Source: Getty Images) A coyote is seen in this generic image. (Source: Getty Images)
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Coyotes are no strangers to neighbourhoods in Barrie, with more sightings and encounters reported all the time.

The intelligent and adaptive canines usually avoid human interaction, but the City of Barrie believes some are becoming more adventurous because they are being fed.

This can pose a significant risk to pets, with many residents claiming coyotes have sized up or even injured their pets, leaving many wondering why the City isn't taking action to be rid of the wild animals.

However, the City of Barrie maintains that coyotes are an integral part of urban ecosystems, playing a crucial role in controlling the populations of rabbits, rats, and mice.

Understanding coyote behaviour can help prevent conflicts.

Coyote activity often peaks during specific times of the year, such as mating season from January to February, den selection and pup rearing from March to May, and scattering of pack members from September to December.

To deter coyotes from approaching homes and pets, the City says residents should take proactive measures, including securing garbage bins, removing attractants like pet food, and keeping pets leashed.

Pet owners, in particular, should take extra precautions.

While coyotes typically avoid humans, they may view small pets as prey or engage in confrontations with larger dogs.

The City says keeping pets leashed, especially during walks, and ensuring they're indoors at night are essential safety measures.

Residents are also encouraged to carry noise-making devices such as whistles or umbrellas when walking pets, as these can help scare off coyotes if encountered. Additionally, promptly cleaning up after pets and spaying or neutering them can mitigate potential conflicts.

The City of Barrie urges residents to report sightings of sick or injured wild animals to Enforcement Services at 705-739-4241.

In emergencies where public safety is at risk, dial 911 immediately.

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