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City of Burlington provides information for residents on how to avoid potential coyote conflicts during denning season

Burlington, Ont. – April 3, 2018— The City of Burlington is providing residents with steps they can take to help reduce the risk of potential coyote conflicts during the animal’s denning season.

Denning season refers to the time of year coyotes’ pups are born. Shortly before a coyote gives birth, between April and May, the coyote will begin excavating a den which they will use to raise their pups.

While naturally wary of humans, coyotes will seek food and shelter in residential neighbourhoods when the opportunity arises. Things residents can do to help deter coyotes include:

  • Never feed coyotes
  • Keep dogs on leash and pick up pet waste – coyotes are attracted to dog feces
  • Maintain a tidy property clear of garbage, food, brush, long grass and wood piles – these conditions provide potential den sites for coyotes or other wild animals that attract coyotes
  • Inspect your property and ensure openings under decks, sheds and similar structures are closed and sealed
  • Install motion sensor lights around your property.

In situations where a coyote approaches, residents are reminded of the following:

  • Stop. Don’t run.
  • Pick up small children and pets
  • Stand as tall as you can
  • Make noise, be as loud as you can, shout “go away”
  • Wave your arms and stomp your feet
  • Use hazing techniques, such as popping open an umbrella, throwing an object near the coyote or shaking your keys
  • Back away slowly
  • Report coyote sightings online at www.burlington.ca/coyote
  • If you see an aggressive, sick or injured coyote, call Burlington’s Animal Services at 905-335-3030
  • If a coyote poses an immediate threat or danger to public safety, call 9-1-1 and alert Halton Regional Police.

Quick Facts

  • Coyotes are native to North America and can be found living in urban and rural areas.
  • Coyote sightings in Burlington are common. The city’s green spaces and forested areas provide an excellent habitat for coyotes who can travel great distances along ravines, hydro corridors, and highways. 
  • Food sources like mice, rats, and garbage are readily available in urban areas, attracting coyotes to residential neighbourhoods.
  • In 2015, Burlington City Council approved a Coyote Response Strategy that provides guidelines on preventing and managing conflicts with coyotes.
  • In neighbourhoods where coyote conflicts have been reported, the city has taken actions which include things like, increasing patrols by Animal Services staff, installing additional signage to warn of coyotes in the area, and conducting door-to-door outreach with local residents and businesses about the elimination of potential food sources.

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