Aggressive Coyote at Sammamish Commons: Tips for Conflict Prevention

Release Date: May 05, 2022
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UPDATED May 10, 2022

The City became aware of an aggressive coyote at Sammamish Commons on May 4. We contracted with USDA to assess the situation and this animal is no longer a threat to the public. 

 

ORIGINAL ARTICLE

The City is aware of an aggressive coyote at Sammamish Commons. The Department of Fish and Wildlife has been notified and is contact with USDA to assess the situation. The below sign is being put in place throughout the Commons to alert visitors. 

 

From the Department of Fish and Wildlife:

Prevention is the best tool for minimizing conflicts with coyotes and other wildlife. To prevent conflicts with coyotes, use the following management strategies around your property and encourage your neighbors to do the same.

Don’t leave small children unattended where coyotes are frequently seen or heard. If there are coyote sightings in your area, prepare your children for a possible encounter. Explain the reasons why coyotes live there (habitat/food source/ species adaptability) and what they should do if one approaches them (don’t run, be as big, mean, and loud as possible). By shouting a set phrase such as “go away coyote” when they encounter one, children will inform nearby adults of the coyote’s presence as opposed to a general scream. Demonstrate and rehearse encounter behavior with the children.

Never feed coyotes. Coyotes that are fed by people often lose their fear of humans and develop a territorial attitude that may lead to aggressive behavior. Try to educate your friends and neighbors about the problems associated with feeding coyotes. If you belong to a homeowner’s association or neighborhood watch, bring up the subject during one of the meetings.

Don’t give coyotes access to garbage. Keep garbage can lids on tight by securing them with rope, chain, bungee cords, or weights. Better yet, buy quality garbage cans with clamps or other mechanisms that hold lids on. To prevent tipping, secure the side handles to metal or wooden stakes driven into the ground. Or keep your cans in tight-fitting bins, a shed, or a garage.

Prevent access to fruit and compost. Keep fruit trees fenced, or pick up fruit that falls to the ground. Keep compost piles within a fenced area or securely covered. Cover new compost material with soil or lime to prevent it from smelling. Never include animal matter in your compost; it attracts coyotes. If burying food scraps, cover them with at least 12 inches of soil, and don’t leave any garbage above ground in the area—including the stinky shovel.

Feed dogs and cats indoors. If you must feed your pets outside, do so in the morning or at midday, and pick up food, water bowls, leftovers, and spilled food well before dark every day.