Wild Pups and Safe Pets

Right now, coyotes living across Vancouver are giving birth to a new litter of pups in their dens.   Greg Hart, Urban Wildlife Program Coordinator for Stanley Park Ecology Society (SPES), explains, “These new pups won’t leave their dens for a couple weeks and are completely dependent on their mother and pack.”  In the spring, coyote sightings tend to increase as we spend more time outside enjoying the weather and coyotes are out trying to provide for the youngsters.  At this time of year, coyotes are more likely to act defensively towards people and pets who venture near their dens. Hart reminds us, “We can keep our pets safe by keeping our dogs on a leash and cats indoors.”

Coyote litter in Van Dusen Gardens (Photo: Mark White)

Coyotes are typically shy and elusive creatures.  “Coyotes do a great job co-existing with us in Vancouver.  They have adopted a mainly nocturnal life-style—just to avoid us,” says Hart.  We can do our part to help keep coyotes wild by scaring them away and removing food sources around our homes.  Scaring away coyotes also helps to reinforce their natural fear of people.

SPES monitors coyote activity across Vancouver and posts all sightings online on an interactive map.  If you do come across a coyote, report your sighting via the online-report form.  For more information about coyotes and tips on co-existing with them: follow Co-Existing with Coyotes on facebook, check out their website, or call 604-681-WILD.  These simple actions help keep people, pets and coyotes safe.

By Greg Hart, Urban Wildlife Coordinator