Coyotes in Ridgewood?

Keep those trash cans tightly shut and your littlest furry friends inside: coyotes have been spotted in Ridgewood recently. Ridgewood Police Department asks that if you see one during the day that shows no fear to call the Ridgewood Police Department: 201-652-3900.

Although sightings are not frequent and coyotes pose little threat, it can be a scary sight. In fact, maybe I’ll start carrying around my hiking whistle. Coyotes are mostly on the hunt for small rodents, food left outdoors or compost piles. Last year, in Saddle River, 5 coyotes circled a dog walker and their dog. A passing car honked was able to distract the coyotes and end the confrontation.

Coyote Precautions

NJ.gov offers the following guidelines to reduce the likelihood of conflicts with coyotes:

  • Never feed a coyote. Deliberately feeding coyotes puts pets and other residents in the neighborhood at risk.
  • Feeding pet cats and/or feral (wild) cats outdoors can attract coyotes. The coyotes feed on the pet food and also prey upon the cats.
  • Put garbage in tightly closed containers that cannot be tipped over.
  • Remove sources of water, especially in dry climates.
  • Bring pets in at night.
  • Put away bird feeders at night to avoid attracting rodents and other coyote prey.
  • Provide secure enclosures for rabbits, poultry, and other farm animals.
  • Pick up fallen fruit and cover compost piles.
  • Although extremely rare, coyotes have been known to attack humans. Parents should monitor their children, even in familiar surroundings, such as backyards.
  • Install motion-sensitive lighting around the house.
  • Clear brush and dense weeds from around dwellings – this reduces protective cover for coyotes and makes the area less attractive to rodents and rabbits. Coyotes, as well as other predators, are attracted to areas where rodents are concentrated like woodpiles.
  • If coyotes are present, make sure they know they’re not welcome. Make loud noises, blast a canned air siren, throw rocks, or spray them with a garden hose.

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Author: amynidds

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