Coexisting Versus Trapping
Trapping & Removal of Coyotes
Please note that trapping and removing a coyote is illegal in Illinois without the proper permits. A property owner or tenant must obtain a Nuisance Animal Removal Permit to trap and remove most species of wildlife.
As with many wild animals, the coyote, when left alone, will regulate his own numbers. If coyotes in a certain area are killed, die or are relocated, the remaining members will fill the vacancies, either with larger litters or by allowing outsiders to move into the area.
Due to the rapid loss of habitat by over-developing, many coyotes have found themselves co-habitating with humans, often to the dismay of the humans. With a little knowledge, we humans can learn to co-exist with this native species. Eradication of the coyote from certain areas disturbs the eco-system of that area and will not solve the problem of dealing with the "urban" coyote. Education and co-existence are the keys.
Co-Existing With Coyotes
- Do not feed the wildlife. While many of us enjoy the small songbirds in our yards, large amounts and prolonged use of wild bird seed will attract not only the wild birds but the rabbits, squirrels, mice and gophers. These little creatures will in turn attract the coyote and other predatory animals. If you do feed the wild birds, put out only small amounts of seed at a time. Table scraps, leftovers, etc. should be discarded and not left outdoors for the wildlife. Those who employ this practice may have neighbors who'd prefer to keep the wildlife at a distance. Be a good neighbor and don't encourage the wildlife to become dependent on you.
- Do not keep pet food outdoors, coyotes are scavengers and on a slow day, a dish of dog or cat food really hits the spot and keeps them coming back for more.
- Pick fruit growing in your yard. Grapes, berries, soft fruits, and avocados are a coyote's favorite dessert. Pick your fruit as soon as it ripens and keep rotted fruit off the ground.
- Make your trash cans inaccessible. Keep trash can lids securely fastened or keep trash cans in your garage until trash day. Ammonia or pepper in the trash can may also discourage the scavenging coyote.
- Battery operated flashing lights, tape recorded human noises, scattered moth balls and ammonia-soaked rags strategically placed may deter coyotes from entering your property.
Benefits of Living Near Coyotes
Coyotes help keep the balance of nature in order, and are great at rodent control. An area with coyotes will not be overrun with mice, gophers, squirrels or rabbits. Natural rodent control is certainly preferable to our man-made poisons and inhumane traps. Most of the intelligent cattle ranchers in the West welcome coyotes on their lands as a way of controlling the burrowing rodents whose holes have injured many cows and horses during round-up time. Coyotes love insects and many a farm has been saved from massive large insect invasions (i.e. grasshoppers) by allowing the coyotes to roam the fields.