Living with Nevada’s Urban Coyotes

On any given day, the Nevada Department of Wildlife receives multiple calls from people expressing their concerns and asking questions about the wildlife they see in their communities. While the nature of those calls varies, a common focus of concern is the urban coyote.
 
Those who have questions or concerns about Nevada’s urban coyotes are invited to attend one of two “Living with Urban Coyotes” seminars being hosted by the Department of Wildlife and Wildlife Services, a division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. One will take place in Reno and the other in Las Vegas at the following locations:
 
Monday, Aug. 14, 6-8 p.m.
NDOW Western Region Office
1100 Valley Road
Reno, 89512
 
Wednesday, Aug 16, 7-9 p.m.
Clark County Library 
1401 East Flamingo Road
Las Vegas, NV 89119
 
“Perhaps the most frequent callers are pet owners who fear for their safety and that of their pet,” said Josh Cerda, an urban wildlife coordinator for the Department of Wildlife. “As a general rule, coyotes want nothing to do with us, but they will eat small pets.”
 
Coyotes don’t differentiate between a house cat and a rabbit. They both represent something edible, but there are some things pet owners can do to lessen the chance of losing a pet to hungry coyote. 
 
Carl Frey, a wildlife biologist with Wildlife Service, recommends that “you always keep your pet close to you, under control and on a leash. I also would suggest that you choose the times to feed and exercise your pet wisely, keeping in mind that most coyote activity is in the early morning, dusk and at night.”
 
Frey also said it is a good idea to keep pet food locked up and always feed them indoors. He recommends closing dog and cat doors after dark so your pet can’t go outside unattended during those hours.  “I also would be cautious about getting close to a coyote’s habitat or areas where they have been frequently spotted. When they have young this makes the adults more territorial and aggressive,” he said.
 
While there are several non-lethal techniques that can be used to minimize the chances of losing a pet to a coyote, Frey said, “The best way is to remove what coyotes need to survive -- food, water and shelter. If you can reduce the availability of these three things, this will make the area less desirable for coyotes.”
 
For more information about the Living with Urban Coyote seminars contact Jessica Heitt in Reno, 775-688-1501 or Josh Cerda in Las Vegas, 702-486-5127, ext. 3851.
 
The Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW) protects, restores and manages fish and wildlife, and promotes fishing, hunting, and boating safety. NDOW’s wildlife and habitat conservation efforts are primarily funded by sportsmen’s license and conservation fees and a federal surcharge on hunting and fishing gear. Support wildlife and habitat conservation in Nevada by purchasing a hunting, fishing, or combination license. Find us on Facebook, Twitter or visit us at www.ndow.org.