FWC: no coyote problems in the city
There are apparently no recent problems with coyotes in Cape Coral as was previously reported.
On Friday, the Cape police sent out an alert to residents about a group of eight large coyotes living in the area of Embers Parkway, between Burnt Store Road and El Dorado Boulevard. Police indicated that the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission had asked the city to pass on the coyote alert.
FWC officials reported, however, that no alert was given to the city to share with the public.
“We don’t have any indication that there was a problem with coyotes,” Gary Morse, FWC spokesman, said on Tuesday. “We don’t have any indication that there’s any unusual problems in Cape Coral.”
Since July, the agency has received six reports of coyotes within the city. One report indicated that a coyote went after a small dog, but the coyote was unsuccessful as the owner of the pet intervened.
“The other reports were simply that they saw coyotes,” he said.
Morse noted that coyotes are typical for the area.
“Coyotes are common throughout Florida, especially in urban areas,” he said.
They are highly adaptable when it comes to their diet.
“Coyotes eat just about anything, including insects, small mammals like rats, squirrels and mice, fruit and vegetables, garbage,” Morse said. “If given the opportunity, even cats and small dogs.”
However, they rarely are a danger for humans.
“Coyotes are generally not a threat to people, including small children,” he said.
Sightings do not need to be reported to FWC, but nuisance behavior should.
“Problem wildlife behavior stems from two things: feeding opportunities around developed areas and losing fear of people, which emboldens them,” Morse said.
“If they see a coyote, it’s a good idea to haze it, meaning make it feel uncomfortable,” he said.
Such tactics can also be applied to raccoons, bears, bobcats and such.
“Which all can exhibit nuisance behavior,” Morse said.
Coyotes tend to be more active between dusk and dawn, but can be active during the day.
As for protecting pets, cats should be kept indoors or in well protected areas. Small dogs should be walked on leashes and avoid areas that are not well lit or have a lot of shrubs where coyotes can hide.
“Owners can carry bear spray, a stick or golf club, something like that,” he said.
For more information on coyotes and tips, visit: myfwc.com.
To report nuisance behavior from wildlife, contact the FWC at (863) 648-3200.