After coyote sightings, Maize police urge caution with pets


MAIZE, Kan. (KWCH) – The Maize Police Department is urging residents to “be mindful when letting or leaving pets outside” due to several recent sightings of coyotes in residential neighborhoods.

Coyotes typically prey on small mammals such as mice or voles. The generally nocturnal animals are rarely seen, except as they move from one part of their territory to another in search of food. Observing a coyote in this manner, even during the daytime, does not mean the coyote is sick or aggressive. If the coyote is scared of the presence of a human, this is natural behavior and shouldn’t be cause for concern, police say.

A coyote that does not run away when encountering humans has most likely been accustomed, or habituated, to people. This can occur when a coyote has been fed near a residential area, either by handouts, pet food left outside or unsecured garbage. Coyotes that depend on these sources of food may begin to approach humans looking for a handout and can exhibit what is perceived as excessively tame or aggressive behavior.

Police say that when coyotes become habituated, hazing can reform their behavior. Hazing involves using a variety of scare techniques to teach a coyote to regard people as threatening and stay away from them.



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