Co-existing with Coyotes
Every year the municipality receives calls with coyote sightings from residents.
Living in Manitoba, we have the benefit of being surrounded by incredible wildlife. Whether they are deer, birds or coyotes, each animal plays a special role in our environment. Regardless if you live in the city or country, wildlife surrounds us all.
It’s important to educate yourself about these animals and ensure you are doing everything possible to stay safe.
The RM reminds residents to keep your dogs on a leash, and don’t allow any pets to roam loose.
West St. Paul works closely with Manitoba Conservation on coyote issues as they arise and follows the government’s guidance and recommendations on how best to handle wildlife in the community.
Reducing Coyote Problems
- Do not feed coyotes or any other wildlife, especially near human habitation.
- Keep all garbage in plastic or metal containers with lids tightly secured.
- Keep children under close supervision while they are outside.
- Bring pet food inside a secure location every night or, better yet, feed your pet indoors.
- Keep pets inside at night and under close supervision while they are outside during the day.
- Carry items that make loud noises when outdoors and ensure children do the same to discourage coyotes. For example, pebbles in a canister that make noise when shaken, or a whistle or airhorn.
- If you see a coyote while you are in your vehicle, honk your horn, the noise will bother them and make them uncomfortable with human presence.
- Avoid close contact with any wild animal or wild animal feces to prevent exposure to disease or parasites, and ensure your pet's vaccinations are up to date.
- Call Manitoba Conservation at 204-785-5080 if you see a coyote intentionally approach a person or pet, a sick or injured coyote, or observe a coyote being fed by a person; or a daytime observation of a coyote in a schoolyard or daycare.
Encountering a Coyote
If the coyote attacks you — Fight Back!
- Never approach or crowd a coyote — give it an escape route.
- Stop, remain calm and assess your situation.
- If the coyote seems unaware of you, move away quietly when it is not looking in your direction.
- If the coyote is aware of you, let it know you are human: shout at it, wave your arms above your head to make yourself appear more threatening, throw stones or other objects at it.
- If the coyote continues to approach, back away slowly and move toward buildings or human activity.
- Do not turn away or run — this may encourage the coyote to chase you.
- Information courtesy Province of Manitoba/Wildlife Branch
Other coyote facts
Coyotes help to maintain our ecosystem. They regulate mid-sized predators such as foxes, raccoons and skunks. This assists the avian population greatly.
The coyote is well known across North America. They are easy to identify by their dog-like appearance. Their coat varies in colour from red to brown or grey. They have large pricked ears, a long snout and their tail normally points towards the ground when they walk or run. In comparison, a dogs’ tail curls upwards.
Coyotes are most active at night, although they have been known to come out during the day as well. If for any reason you encounter a coyote, remember to remain calm. Try to make yourself look as big as possible, make lots of noise and lastly, back away slowly. Give the coyote space to run away. It is extremely rare for a coyote to attack a human, as their natural behaviour is to run away.
Coyotes may carry disease such as distemper and on occasion, rabies. These diseases can spread to our pets. Because of this, it is important to keep your animals’ vaccinations up to date. It’s also important to keep your property clean, as coyotes are attracted to garbage. Ensure all garbage is sealed in garbage bags and placed in the appropriate bins with the lid firmly closed.
It is imperative that we do not feed coyotes, or any form of wildlife. Wildlife can survive on their own and when humans feed them, it makes them dependent on us for their survival.
The Rural Municipality of West St. Paul and Manitoba Agriculture and Resource Development partnered together to bring residents a free public information session on how to co-exist with coyotes on September 16 via Zoom.
Residents from West St. Paul and neighbouring municipalities were in attendance to learn more about coyotes living in our communities and the things we can do to reduce the risk of conflict with them. Most of the time, coyotes are timid animals that try to avoid interactions with people. However, coyotes are very adaptable and can be equally comfortable living in urban, rural and wilderness areas. With coyotes living among us more and more, we need to learn how to co-exist.
Click here to view the information session.
Click below to learn more on wildlife: