This week, the City of Laguna Woods, CA, voted to allow the shooting of coyotes, claiming they have become more bold. WildRescue's Director, Rebecca Dmytryk, comments on the news:
IT IS NOT THAT COYOTES HAVE GOTTEN BOLDER, HUMANS HAVE GOTTEN STUPIDER
So many people have grown out of touch with nature - they've forgotten that they are animals living among other animals.
There is natural law and order, but humans don't play by the rules, and that gets them in trouble.
Unfortunately, there is nothing odd about a coyote snatching a pet, even off of a leash. These accounts are on the rise, but it is NOT because the coyotes are growing bolder - it’s nothing that can be culled from a population, because it is a learned behavior - taught to them by humans.
People, through their lack of understanding about nature and coyotes, have 'trained' the wild dogs to be comfortable around humans. Therefore, until people learn to teach the coyotes to fear them again, which is their instinct, these incidents will go on and on and on and on, no matter how many coyotes are slaughtered.
Coyotes preying on pets is a symptom, not the problem. Extermination of coyotes does not address the problem - the problem is human behavior.
When I receive a call about a loitering coyote, I ask "When you see the coyote, what's your reaction - what do you do?" The typical answer is, nothing - they say that they just look at it, or they go back inside their house - nothing that says to the coyote they had better scram!
For there to be change within the coyote population, there must be change in the behavior of the human population. Every encounter a coyote has with a human must be a negative one. For example, having a ‘penny-can’ thrown at them, being chased down, feeling the sting of a paint ball - there are numerous aversion tactics that will work - but it is work, and requires the commitment of a town's citizens.
Trapping and killing coyotes is a cop out. It is a waste of money, and a crime against nature.