While returning from a movie at about 11:55pm on Thursday night (July 15th) my wife and I were driving through the neighborhood when we saw the silhouette of what looked like an unleashed large dog cross the street about a block in front of us. Getting closer I was looking for an owner only to be surprised to find not one, but two coyotes! We followed them as they slowly made their way along West 11th from about Trutch to MacKenzie, when they turned south. We left them at that point. It was interesting to watch them travel together as each took a sidewalk and slipped along both sides of West 11th.
The Internet tells me that although coyotes usually travel in large groups, they primarily hunt in pairs. It is believed that there are several thousand coyotes in the lower mainland. An excellent resource concerning urban coyotes is the Stanley Park Ecology Society. Their website tracks urban coyote sightings in Vancouver and provides several resources on how we can “coexist with coyotes” in an urban environment.
They explain, “Living with coyotes around is like living with any other neighbours- hardly a reason to panic but at the same time take reasonable precautions and stay alert to what goes on around you. If you have a bad feeling, pay attention to it but don’t overreact either. Discourage predators from finding food around your house and always ensure your small pets are always supervised.”
While coyote sightings are infrequent they do occur in Kitsilano! Take precaution during late night walks – if you do encounter a coyote be as big, mean and loud as you can. Throw objects in the direction of the coyote to scare them off if necessary. If the coyote continues to approach, do not run but retain eye contact with the coyote, pick-up small pets or children, and move slowly toward an area of increased activity. This will effectively work to deter habituated coyotes.
Last modified: July 16, 2010