In our seven-plus years of reporting on West Seattle coyotes, we’ve heard people often mention they bring outdoor cats inside at night, in hopes of avoiding coyote encounters. This report from Jaime is a reminder that coyotes roam in the daytime too:
I thought I should report this to the blog, even if not sure of proper procedure.
My neighbor reported to me that just last week after hearing a commotion outside his porch, opened his front door to find a young coyote who had the family cat in his mouth. He immediately yelled and tried to scare the coyote away, which did cause the coyote to drop the cat. But the cat was badly injured and subsequently died.
This was in the middle of the daytime at 50th and Hudson. My neighbor believed that the coyote had entered from the alley into their fenced front yard and grabbed the cat, who was sunning himself on their porch.
Biologists who have analyzed coyotes’ diets say this is only a small part of what they eat – more commonly, they consume rats and mice, among other things you can see listed here – but nonetheless, it can be a risk if your pet is outside, unattended, so we publish this as a neighbor-to-neighbors alert. (A wildlife agent was blunt about it in this report we published two years ago.)
GATEWOOD REPORT #2: Not far from there, at 36th/Myrtle (map), Eugene reports: “3 pm today. Walking up Myrtle street in broad daylight. Maybe it’s not news anymore. But it looked like a chupacabra with fur so I thought I’d mention it.”
PUGET RIDGE: Forwarded from a neighborhood list, a sighting at midmorning today near 21st/Dawson (map).
Three daytime coyote sightings have been reported in the past day and a half, starting with the one texted with that photo along SW Rose in Gatewood. Then this afternoon, in the span of half an hour, Vanessa e-mailed word of one in an alley between 36th and 37th and Findlay – “thin, scared-looking,” she said – followed by Christine‘s note, saying, “Just wanted to let you know that there have been two coyote sightings in our neighborhood (38th and Morgan) on Saturday, Feb. 14th and today, Monday, Feb. 16th. Both sightings occurred around 1:30 pm.” It’s mating season for coyotes, and experts say that tends to increase their daytime activity. Find out more about coyote behavior – and how to help ensure they and we keep our distance from each other – via this state Department of Fish and Wildlife webpage; if you don’t have time to read through it, short version – if one gets too close, scare it away. And don’t leave food out.
Don’t know if it’s the same coyote, but two people reported sightings in the same general area of Gatewood/Upper Morgan (map) this afternoon. The photo is from John, who e-mailed to say: “Just took this pic this afternoon on Willow, between 39th and 38th. I was walking my dog and this coyote ran out in front of us, crossing the street into the backyard in the alley.” We also got a phone call from someone who reported seeing a coyote on SW Frontenac between 39th and 40th, headed east, around 4 pm. Our most recent round of sighting reports was Gatewood-centric, too. Remember that as advised by wildlife experts, best thing to do if you see one is to try your hardest to scare it away.
Check on your chickens, urban farmers. Both of today’s coyote reports mention backyard birds. Dan at 37th/Holden [map] says a coyote came into his yard today and got two of his four chickens, normally kept in a chain-link-surrounded enclosure, but let out to “free range” in the daytime, and it happened while he turned his attention away from a bit. We also heard from Janis, who says she saw a coyote at 2 pm at California/Southern [map]: “Was alerted by the chickens making noise.” Both of those locations are in Gatewood, as is a sighting on New Year’s Day that we still had in queue – Belinda saw one that day, going “down the sidewalk looking in yards in the 6500 block of 40th Ave SW.” [map]
P.S. Our usual “coexisting with coyotes” advice link includes, toward the bottom, advice on protecting poultry.
Today’s impromptu wildlife theme continues, this time away from the shore – We’ve received three reports of coyote sightings in Sunrise Heights around mid-afternoon. Jeremy shared the photos (taken from a distance – we cropped them), after seeing two “wandering down 27th near Othello” in the 2 pm hour.
Not long after that, Ellery saw two coyotes that “just strolled by in front of my house on 32nd Ave at Holden St.” That’s also where Sarah reported seeing them. (Here’s a map showing both aforementioned locations.)
If you haven’t seen coyote mentions here before … we’ve been publishing reader reports of sightings for more than seven years; here’s the archive. The more awareness, and the more that we all follow advice such as not leaving food out, the more likelihood of continuing to minimize closeup conflict. (The state Fish and Wildlife “Living with Wildlife” page that we usually recommend seems to be inaccessible right now, so here’s another page full of info/advice.)
One person who recently reported a coyote sighting phrased it more as a surprise that they are in West Seattle. So that’s why we mention them from time to time … in hopes fewer will be surprised. That report was from a man out with his 3-month old daughter who saw it in the 37th/Hudson vicinity. Other recent reports include an early-morning sighting as a coyote emerged from Lincoln Park; a coyote running down 40th SW in Gatewood, toward Othello; one jumping over a 6-foot fence in Arbor Heights to try to get a backyard chicken; two in Highland Park around HP Way and Othello; 6700 block of 42nd in Morgan Junction; and one near Fauntleroy and Dawson.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU SEE ONE? As the experts advise – try to scare it away – shout, wave, throw rocks, and remove every source of food you can (that includes outdoor pet food as well as small pets themselves, although experts say they more often eat small wild animals such as rats). Want to see where else they’ve been reported in the six-plus years we’ve been publishing sightings? Click the word “coyotes” under the headline of this story, to reach the archive.
Here’s the latest proof of that:
That photo is from Scott, who says the coyote was “right in the front yard” at 39th and Graham, 8 am today. *Added – an 8:20 am photo from Jamie, same area*:
Another sighting this morning, via Twitter:
There was a coyote hanging out at Fauntleroy and Raymond this morning @westseattleblog
— Dorcas Bean (@dorcasbean) November 5, 2014
And Robyn saw one “run west up the sidewalk on Rose Street west of 35th” around 5 o’clock Tuesday evening.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU SEE ONE? As the experts advise – do everything you can to scare it away. Yell, wave, throw rocks. That’s what experts urge, to encourage them to keep their distance. And remove every source of food you can (that includes outdoor pet food as well as small pets themselves, although experts say they more often eat small wild animals such as rats).
Two coyote reports this Halloween: Paul tweeted about one in Fauntleroy, at California/Director, and we got a text about a “skinny coyote” near California/98th in Arbor Heights. Other reports in the past week or so include another one in Arbor Heights last Sunday, in which a coyote was interrupted while killing a cat (39th/100th); Upper Morgan (38th/Morgan); Puget Ridge (18th/Myrtle). If you’re new or haven’t seen these reports before, over the past six years we have received reader-reported sightings just about everywhere in West Seattle. This information from the state Department of Fish and Wildlife explains what to do if you see one (short answer – scare it away). Our previous coyote reports are archived here.
(Added Thursday afternoon: Coyote seen by Rebecca on SW Barton)
Maybe it’s the change of seasons. The pace of coyote-sighting reports has picked up recently. We report them for awareness and education, not hysteria – here are the most-recent reports:
TWO HIGHLAND PARK SIGHTINGS: Moments ago, someone texted about a coyote spotted today at 18th and Cloverdale. That’s the second recent report we’ve had from Highland Park; Nicole reported one seen near 14th and Trenton “with a cat carcass.”
GATEWOOD SIGHTING #1: Janet says one “walked right by me as I was doing yard work” around 4:45 pm Tuesday near California/Webster. “Did not seem afraid of me. Appeared straggly and hungry.” It was headed east and she thinks it might have come up the stairs at 44th/Webster (not far from Solstice Park).
GATEWOOD SIGHTING #2: A few hours before that, to the northeast, Elizabeth encountered one while working, similar description: “I am a FedEx driver and just followed one down the street near 38th Ave SW & Myrtle. It was extremely mangy looking and emaciated, which could be of concern. Still a rather large one though. I saw it run up a tree filled driveway toward a house (in the 4100 block of) SW Orchard. Just a heads-up!”
NEAR CAMP LONG: TH spotted a coyote around 8 pm Sunday, about to cross 36th SW at Brandon: “Probably heading towards Camp Long. He looked healthy and while he was cautious he didn’t appear afraid. I figure he was 2′ at the shoulder.”
ARBOR HEIGHTS: Wendy reported her mother-in-law spotting two coyotes hanging out at a vacant lot near 39th/105th.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU SEE ONE? Our recent texter in HP said she had called Fish and Wildlife, which advised they don’t routinely respond to sightings. That’s true and has long been so. They do have an excellent guide about coexisting with coyotes, with advice such as how to scare them away if you see them, so that they will be encouraged to keep their distance, for our sake and theirs. We link it from every coyote report we publish – so here it is again.
Two coyote sightings to share today, first ones we’ve received in a while. As we’ve done more than 150 times in the past six years, when we get them, we publish them, not as cause for panic, but in the spirit of information/education, since not everyone realizes that we share our city with them. Patricia:
Coyote sighting this morning in Arbor Heights… about 6:30 am as I was walking two spaniels north on 39th Ave SW, a coyote was spotted sitting at the edge of the yard of the demolished-for-new-construction home between SW 106th and SW 104th. Pretty big – taller than my larger dog, though not so heavy. He moved into the street and sat down, watching us. We got to within 50 feet… close enough for me so I stamped twice. He turned north then west on SW 104th. Pretty neat!
And a quick report from Cynthia on Friday evening:
Coyote spotted on Trenton and 14th Ave SW.
The reports we’ve received over the years (archived here, newest to oldest) also tend to debunk myths such as, they only come out at night, or, they only live near greenbelts. So, what to do if you see one? Most important advice: Scare it away. That and other advice from state wildlife authorities is here.
It’s a wild place we live in … three reader reports to share:
WHALE WATCHING: Heard about the humpbacks in the area this past week or so? Colleen saw one and shared the photo:
A little late since this was Saturday night…..While boating with friends from West Seattle to Bainbridge Saturday evening around 5:15, we spotted a whale … We were so excited, our pictures are not that good. … It was awesome and unbelievable to be so close (our friends turned off their Bayliner’s engine as we watched the whale).
COYOTE REPORT: From Paul in North Admiral:
Just thought I’d pass on news of a coyote sighting in front of my house (Monday) morning on 42nd Ave between Seattle and Atlantic Streets in North Admiral. 4:30 am, I was leaving to go fishing, and a neighbor was walking his dog. We all must have come upon the coyote at the same time, and it took off running. Healthy looking adult. I’ve seen one here before, but it’s been several years.
RACCOONS: From Sean in Gatewood:
Spotted this mom and four youngsters at 8:30 (Monday) morning in my backyard. Very cute, but I’d prefer they dig holes elsewhere.
First coyote report in a while. It’s from Chris:
At 11:45 PM I saw a coyote in the middle of the California-Southern intersection [map]. I was 1/4 block away from it, on the east side of California at Elmgrove. I got a pretty good look at it. I was with my dog and it stopped and looked at us and turned around and went west on Southern towards Northrup. I crossed the street and looked down Southern and it turned around and looked at us again from mid block then continued west on Southern past Northrup. It looked like a healthy young one. I was glad it was wary of us.
Making sure we and coyotes stay wary of each other is a major recommendation of experts – here’s what else the state has to say.
Two wildlife notes from the inbox tonight – Karen, who lives in The Junction, reports three eagles spent at least 10 minutes on the 4030 California construction crane, “perching, circling, landing again and again … much chirping and activity.” They looked like two adults and a juvenile, she says, perhaps flight lessons for the younger one. Eagle sightings in West Seattle certainly aren’t rare, but this is the first on-a-crane report we’ve received.
In the early evening, Phyllis and Jeff reported, “Coyote sighting – about 50-60 lbs and wandering through our yard in the 5000 block of Beach Drive. Looks like he/she has been searching for food, as our backyard was all dug up. Usually don’t see them during the daytime! Our kitties are inside!” (We have actually had more than a few daylight reports over the years. This info from state wildlife experts explains what to do if/when you see one, day or night.)
From the WSB inbox, two coyote reports – first one sent this morning by Debbie:
Just saw a coyote heading east on 108th Street toward 35th [map] in Arbor Heights.
And this note from Russell is about a Wednesday morning double sighting:
Just wanted to warn our neighbors in Gatewood that my wife spotted two very healthy coyotes in the intersection of SW Monroe Street and 41st Avenue SW [map] at 3:45 am (Wednesday morning). After a few minutes they headed south on 41st.
Our standard footnote: We share coyote reports on occasion in the interest of being educational; believe it or not, we still hear from and about people who don’t realize coyotes live in the city, or think you’ll only see them next to greenbelts, or at night, or … It’s in the coyotes’ interests and ours that we keep a wary distance apart; this info from the state explains how (including this key advice: if you see one, try to scare it away).
Two coyote reports to share tonight – one sent this afternoon by an Arbor Heights resident who says her neighbors don’t believe they come out in the daytime. Check the WSB archive of coyote sightings, some with photos – they do! And/or, click ahead to read today’s report (and another one that had been in queue):
No coyote reports in the WSB inbox for a long time, and then suddenly, within minutes of each other, two came in this afternoon, from two different neighborhoods (perhaps because it’s spring and almost pupping time). First, Beth reported: “I just passed a large coyote on 42nd and Barton” (map); then, from Jeff:
Saw a coyote on 44th Ave SW mid-block between SW Rose St & SW Southern St [map] at 12:30 PM today. Ducked into the greenbelt between 44th and 45th when it saw us. Third sighting here in the past 2-3 months. Appears to be the same animal.
If you’re a new reader – WSB has long featured coyote sightings and information (archived here, newest-to-oldest) not out of alarmism, but as education. While they more often eat rodents, they do sometimes eat small pets left alone outside, and bereaved pet owners subsequently say they had no idea that could happen. Without food sources – including dog/cat food put outside – and with “hazing” if you encounter one, they can be encouraged to keep their distance, as advised/explained by the state.
(October 2012 reader photo, by Katina, taken in an Admiral neighborhood)
An unexpected phone call this New Year’s Eve: Aaron the federal wildlife agent called to ask us to share another reminder about keeping your dog(s) safe from coyotes. “We are seeing an increase in coyote calls concerning predation on small dogs at night in West Seattle,” he said. “It’s easily prevented by going out with the small dogs at night as they are let out to relieve themselves. It sounds like simple advice, because it is, and can really help keep your small dogs safe. Removing this attraction can help keep coyotes focused on more natural food sources.”
This is the same advice Aaron offered in another phone call last July, which followed his appearance before the Highland Park Action Committee two months earlier. As we wrote then, he says that even dogs staying in their own yards might be “coaxed” by coyotes to come to the edge of the yard, where the larger canines can grab them. As for cats? As with dogs, if they’re outside and unaccompanied, they’re at risk.
He told us tonight he wants to get this advice out again “to (help) keep coyotes wild in our part of the city.” And they’re out there – if you haven’t seen our coverage before, five years of sightings are archived here). Sightings we’ve heard about this month include:
*Early morning, near Fauntleroy Church/YMCA
*Late morning, 9700 block 30th SW, “jumped our back fence and headed east towards 28th and Safeway”
*Early evening, California Lane (North Admiral)
*Early afternoon, crossing Fauntleroy Way at SW Rose Street: “Moving up from the park into the neighborhood”
What if you come face to face with one? Best advice: Scare it away. That too will help keep them wild, which is what’s best for them, us, and our pets, experts stress, over and over again. More advice here.
(Click image for larger view)
Joe shared that photo a short time ago after spotting the coyote in a backyard in the 3900 block of 55th SW (map). “This one looks like a big one,” he observed. As always, a reminder – best thing to do if you see a coyote relatively close-up is to scare it away, yelling, waving your arms, throwing things. And as a state wildlife biologist told a recent meeting at West Seattle’s Camp Long, an even-more-important action to take to make sure people, pets, and coyotes stay apart is to reduce food sources – including pet food, bird feeders, unsecured trash. Here’s the official state info-sheet with more on all of the above advice, and then some.
Thanks to Angelique for sharing the photo of a coyote spotted in her neighbor’s yard near Delridge/Willow (map). Hard to tell from the photo, but from a video clip she also sent (see it here), it was seen in mid-meal, and the main course looked to Angelique like a raccoon.
The photo gives us another reason to remind you about Wednesday night’s event at Camp Long Environmental Learning Center – the first time in years that you have a chance to come learn (and ask) about coexisting with coyotes – safely for you and for them. Here’s the announcement again:
Living with Coyotes in Seattle
Coyotes live in our neighborhoods and we humans can learn to live with them. Camp Long and the WA Dept. of Fish and Wildlife team up to give tips and insight into co-existing safely with these wild dogs. Learn how they live and how humans can avoid and resolve conflict with them.
Camp Long Lodge
Wednesday, November 13th
7 PM to 8:30 PM
Camp Long’s entrance is at 5200 35th SW.
West Seattle coyotes: Camp Long event to explain how ‘we humans can learn to live with them’; plus, 2 sightingsNovember 5, 2013 at 2:09 pm | In Coyotes, West Seattle news, Wildlife | 4 Comments
Unless you’re a brand-new WSB reader, you likely know we have been sharing coyote reports and information here for more than five years (all archived here, newest to oldest). If you have questions – or are just curious to find out more about them – mark your calendar for an event next week at Camp Long Environmental Learning Center (not far from where Mark Wangerin photographed the one shown above, this time last year). Here’s the announcement:
Coyotes live in our neighborhoods and we humans can learn to live with them. Camp Long and the Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife team up to give tips and insight into co-existing safely with these wild dogs. Learn how they live and how humans can avoid and resolve conflict with them.
Camp Long Lodge (5200 35th SW)
Wednesday, November 13th
7 PM to 8:30 PM
SIDE NOTE – RECENT SIGHTINGS: Before receiving this announcement, we had two sightings in queue for publication, so we’ll mention them here:
*This morning, Jason reported: “Saw a fairly large coyote last night, around 8 pm, at 50th ave and Dawson St in Seaview. He ran into an alley between Dawson and Hudson, and 50th and 51st.”
*From Melissa yesterday, “Just had a coyote head up the hill here on Othello, heading up to Riverview Park. And in the time it took me to type that, it just came back down the street. Couldn’t get a picture. It was moving pretty fast. I don’t think it’s full grown, since it isn’t as big as the last one I saw.”
Four West Seattle coyote reports have come in today – two with photos, starting with the one above, from Kerry Murphy:
We were at Lincoln Park today around noon and a very bold coyote was lurking in the same pretty public spot for about an hour. We were surprised that it was lurking so close to so many people, kids, dogs – it was actually pretty busy there today! It was hanging along the path that runs just west of the gravel path that leads toward the baseball field from the north parking lot.
Stacy saw one on Genesee Hill around 6 tonight:
I was just heading out to walk my dog and saw what I thought was a loose dog running down the middle of 53rd between Genesee and Dakota. [map] At second glance I realized it was a coyote. He ran down the sidewalk, crossed over Dakota and continued down 53rd then turned back and darted into a neighbor’s yard. He must have been hiding out there because my dog started going bananas as we walked down that block. Pet owners in the area, please keep your pets inside!!
And Sean sent a sighting report this afternoon:
Just saw a big coyote going down 36th. He/she turned and went down Raymond heading west. [map] Pretty cool. First coyote sighting for me in West Seattle.
We had two holdover reports from earlier in the week – Eve saw one Monday morning at 32nd and Holden (map), “headed south,” while Jeff saw one near 48th/Raymond (map) last Sunday afternoon, “seemed like a juvenile that was not sure where to go.”
The most recent West Seattle coyote reports shared by WSB readers:
*From Greg this morning: “Saw a few coyotes today at Brandon and 29th along the Longfellow Creek entrance.” [map]
*From Christopher on Saturday afternoon: “Pretty sure I just saw a coyote in the alley between Fauntleroy and 39th and Graham and Morgan.” [map]
*From Karen on Friday: “2 coyotes seen on 98th & 39th Ave SW, 5:30 pm Friday Oct. 18th, just 2 blocks off the top of Fauntleroy Park.” [map]
*From Chris, also early Friday evening: “Just saw a lone coyote poking around in the alley behind our house at 30th and Webster. It headed off down Webster.” [map]
*And on Thursday, Rachael reported that her “neighbor just saw a coyote on 10th & Elmgrove in Highland Park.” [map]
To wrap up this roundup, something new: Ron, who reads WSB daily from his residence in Mexico, sends “coyote news from elsewhere” on occasion. This week, he e-mailed a link from TV’s “Dog Whisperer,” headlined Five Ways to Keep Your Dogs Safe From Coyotes.
Four sightings reported in the past (almost) 24 hours:
*Just called in this morning, “big male coyote at 50th and Graham.” [map]
And three in eastern West Seattle:
*Jonel e-mailed late last night: “Just saw a coyote running down the sidewalk on SW Webster between 16th and 14th. [map] He ran when he saw humans.”
*Jeff saw one “standing in our driveway” around 1 pm Saturday, “6000 block of 17th SW. [map] Ran away when our dog started barking.”
And Kellie reported that her son saw what might have bene the same one on Saturday afternoon while “walking on 17th from the path by Duwamish Housing, up the Graham stairs towards 16th and SSCC.” [map]
Scaring them away is best for them and you, so they are conditioned to keep a healthy distance from humans (and their pets), as advised by state wildlife authorities (if you’ve never followed that link we usually include with coyote reports, it’s got lots of other good advice too).
Out of the WSB inbox this afternoon, from Ann Marie:
There’s a couple running around right now around 28th/27th & Kenyon. [map] I’ve seen them twice now this afternoon…bring your cats in!
As always – we share this “coexisting with coyotes” info including how to scare one off if you see one (or two!).
Thanks to Shawn for sharing news of this sighting:
I just wanted to inform everyone that at 6:45 am this morning I ran into a coyote at the corner of 36th & Brandon [map]. It headed toward Fairmount (Playfield). Please let the neighborhood know to keep their pets indoors.
We share sighting reports not to stir fear but just to be sure people are aware that coyotes are pretty much everywhere in our area, even if you’ve never seen one. Here’s the state’s advice on what to do if you see one, and how to reduce the chances they’ll want to hang around your house, among other things.
Three recent coyote sightings to pass along, starting with this one sent today by Lois:
Friday morning about 9, a coyote came up the hill into our yard. Left when we pounded on the window. Went back down the hill. One of our cats is missing. He had only been out 30 minutes or so. This is in the 2300 block of 51st SW. Close to the College Street ravine.
From Paul in Fauntleroy:
Coyote sighting, Wednesday, October 2. It was on Tillicum SW between SW Donovan and SW Cloverdale st. This was at 9:50 am. It took its time after staring at me and then turned and trotted off to Donovan heading West.
And Michael reported this Gatewood sighting a week and a half ago: “Just saw two coyotes walking west along Portland between California Ave and 44th Ave.”
So what do you do if you see one? Lots of good advice on this state webpage – including steps to take around your house to help increase the chances they’ll keep their distance.
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