West Seattle, Washington
Two sightings from Saturday, one with photos. First, from Karen in Arbor Heights:
This was taken in front of my neighbor’s house on 98th Ave SW between 37th & 39th (our backyards border Fauntleroy Park). This was my (indoor cat’s) first sighting of the year but normally we have a lot around here starting in October. I assume the warmer weather kept them away?
This coyote had black & gray fur but as you can see, they have lost (molted?) most of it so it must be freezing. At one point, he/she looked like a sweet fawn but I the doubt dog walkers thought that.
People stop & always are surprised they come out during the day. I see them head into the woods at night but I normally see them galloping all over the neighborhood during the day.
Hopefully, the family of seven raccoons living in my storm water drain stays safe (swimming in my community pool).
I have a virtual varmint zoo growing out of my backyard.
She said the coyote showed up around 1 pm on Saturday.
Via text, we received a report a few hours after that: “Very sick, mangy-looking coyote walking west on Thistle near 35th. Just now, very brave, must be desperate for food or warmth.”
Here again is the state’s info-sheet about coyotes and co-existing with them. Our online research suggests the fur problem would be more likely mange than molting, as the latter generally involves shedding winter coats when the weather warms up.
Suddenly we have three coyote reports to share – so here goes.
FROM JAF: A coyote crossed 35th SW at Brandon “at approximately 2 pm on 10/27. Poor thing ran east across 35th in traffic to get away from me (pulling in garbage cans). Luckily, cars stopped for it.”
Not long before that, and not too far away:
FROM JOHN … who included this photo:
He saw that coyote “at the corner of 37th and Graham, 1:20 pm today.”
And this happened around 11:30 last night:
FROM JOEY: “Coyote spotted on 34th running toward Barton and the P-Patch. On its way, it attacked a small animal (cat?). Horrible sounds. Little animal got away and ran toward west side of 34th.”
(The most important thing you can do if you see a coyote, the state reminds us on this info-sheet, is to scare it away – for its sake, for your sake, for pets’ sake. They’re everywhere – but they’ll keep their distance if they perceive it’s too risky to get close.)
The photo and report are from Sid:
I was having coffee this morning and saw a coyote stroll across my backyard. We live close to Seola Park. It walked around the side of the house and when I opened the door, it ran away into Marine View Drive.
We have long published coyote-sighting reports to help with education and awareness. The most important thing you can do if you see one is actively scare it away – “hazing” is how experts describe it – wave your arms, throw rocks, etc. They live among us but coexistence depends on them keeping their distance. See the state’s “Living With Wildlife” page on coyotes for more info. (Archived WSB coverage is here.)
Just in via text (206-293-6302, 24/7), our first coyote report of the fall:
Just spotted a large coyote in the street on SW Thistle, near the alley between 24th & 25th Ave. I slowed down thinking it was a stray dog, then watched it go into the walkways in between the apt buildings there. Just want to spread the word since it’s in a highly populated area.
As also noted in our exchange with the texter, that’s across the street from the stretch of Longfellow Creek that runs east of the Chief Sealth International High School/Denny International Middle School campus. But coyotes can turn up anywhere, whether a greenbelt is nearby or not – just browse our eight-plus-year archive of sighting reports for ample evidence of that. When you see one, do your best to scare it away – more for its good than yours – as explained here.
Our latest sighting report is from Kristen, who saw one right about this time Monday:
I checked the blog and saw a posting from a few weeks ago that coyotes were heard in Schmitz Park. I heard them (Sunday) night as well. When I opened the door to go to the car at 5:30 am (Monday) morning, I saw one run down SW Forney Street and into the park. I walked my (large) dogs soon after and had no issues. I did want to report as there are neighbors in our area with small dogs and cats.
Remember – best thing to do if you see a coyote is to scare it away – it’s optimal for all involved if they remain wary of humans – as explained here.
Our tipster in Sunrise Heights took this photo from a distance – which is good, as getting too close to a coyote isn’t good for them or you, not because of danger, but because you don’t want them to get acclimated to close human contact – so it’s a bit blurry, but they wanted you to know about the sighting earlier this afternoon, near 29th and Othello (map). To make sure you know what to do if you see a coyote, check out the coexistence advice from the state Department of Fish and Wildlife. Meantime, browse our coyote-report coverage over the years, newest to oldest, on these archive pages.
Just out of the WSB inbox from Bob:
I just wanted to let you know the coyotes in Schmitz Park have very vocal the past two nights. We have not seen them yet but our dog has been on alert in the back yard. You might want to let the neighbors know to watch their cats and small pets.
We share coyote reports when we get them, not to be alarmist, but because not everyone realizes they live among us, and if you realize that they do, you have a better chance of taking measures to ensure we and they stay a healthy distance apart. This info from the state can help.
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):