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Residents Upset About Coyotes Call Jan. 31 Community Meeting

Public invited to meeting at Episcopal Church of the Epiphany.

The Decatur City Commission held back in early December, but residents clearly want to keep talking about the problem.

They've called a community meeting for 7 p.m. Jan. 31 at the Episcopal Church of the Epiphany at 2089 Ponce de Leon Ave.

The subject is "The Pros and Cons of Trapping Coyotes." Professional trapper Chip Elliot will speak. The public is invited.

Residents have complained for years, but recently they say coyotes are becoming more aggressive. At the Dec. 5 city commission meeting, Christy Bosarge described watching a coyote grab the family cat from her front porch.

She urged the city to become proactive in dealing with coyotes, saying, “If we don’t put the fear back into the coyotes they will dominate us.”

But the city didn't do anything, .

They say these animals are so numerous that other coyotes will move into an are cleared of coyotes.

“Cohabitation is the plan and process of choice for most communities,” City Manager Peggy Merriss said at the meeting.

Here's the email Bosarge sent out announcing the meeting. At the end is an email somebody sent her about a coyote incident.

Community concern continues over the presence and impact of coyotes in our neighborhood. (See email below as one example.) This  meeting will include a brief review of similar concerns in other communities (nationally and locally), and what they are doing about coyotes.

Wildlife specialist and trapper Chip Elliot will share with us his knowledge and experience of 23 years. An update on establishing a central metro coyote reporting system will also be given.

Email received early January:

"I woke up in the night recently to terrible screaming and fighting sounds, and I ran barefoot into the backyard. A pack of coyotes was there -- definitely 3-5 -- and at least one had gotten into my neighbor's barbed-wire pen of goats. A coyote was attacking them.

It was dark back there, but I screamed and yelled and chased them off. "By the time I woke the neighbors and they checked on the goats, the biggest of the goats, who is about 60/70 pounds, had puncture wounds in her neck. But is amazingly ok.

She obviously was defending the much smaller goats. My neighbor put up more barbed wire, but found the coyotes too persistent and had to send the goats back to the farm they came from for fear they would be eaten.
"I did file a report on the Decatur News page -- but WOW -- if they are willing to come into a backyard and try to take down a LARGE goat, after hopping over a 5- foot fence topped by barbed wire, there's no reason to think they wouldn't attack kids."
 

Jennifer Palese, Decatur

David D January 24, 2012 at 03:09 PM
I don't want my tax dollars being spent to protect farm animals being kept in backyards in the city of Decatur.
maxine rock February 01, 2012 at 04:02 PM
Coyotes are with us because we have destroyed natural habitats where they otherwise might live. If you have domestic pets, it is your responsibility to care for them, but killing coyotes to do so is just pushing that responsibility off on the rest of us. And, if you look upon wild animals as a community "problem," you must also admit such animals are community "property." You cannot destroy my "property" for your own needs. Max R.
Joe Carson February 01, 2012 at 05:17 PM
Coyotes are here because humans pose no threat to them in the city and food is plentiful. Other than cars, nothing in Dekalb county will kill a coyote. They quickly learn that big yelling humans don't hurt them. Small squealing humans probably taste good; no hair, hide or claws to digest. Coyotes migrated east of the Mississippi around 1988: http://www2.godanriver.com/news/2011/mar/13/trappers-hunters-learn-history-coyote-migration-ar-901646/ Trapping eliminates some animals, but because the trapped animals are removed from the population, there is no pack learning experience. Being shot at in the rural counties, the packs have learned that city-slickers don't shoot at them. Until we allow property owners to shoot coyotes on sight, they'll continue eating our pets. But that won't happen until we lose a child. And maybe not even then. "1981 a 3-year old female in California died" "in 2009 a 19-year old female was fatally attacked" http://urbancoyoteresearch.com/Coyote_Attacks.htm
Teri Mitchelle February 27, 2013 at 08:24 PM
Is there a way to feed them a type of drug to harm their reproductive organs , like we do with cock roaches?? As I understand, if we kill them , they come back stronger.

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