Due to an increase in calls from residents who are hearing and seeing coyotes, Oneida County Sheriff Rob Maciol is sharing guidance released today by the State Department of Environmental Conservation.

Maciol says the information is helpful to prevent conflicts between people and coyotes during the pup-rearing season, which typically runs from January through March.

To reduce or prevent conflicts with coyotes, people are encouraged to take the following steps:
• Do not feed coyotes.
• Do not leave food outside. Pet food and garbage attract coyotes and other wildlife and increase risks to people and pets:
o Do not feed pets outside.
o Prevent access to garbage.
o Fence or enclose compost piles.
o Eliminate availability of bird seed. Concentrations of birds and rodents that come to feeders can attract coyotes.
• Do not allow coyotes to approach people or pets. If you see a coyote, be aggressive in your behavior: stand tall and hold your arms up or out to look as large as possible. If a coyote lingers for too long, make loud noises, wave your arms and throw sticks and stones.
• Teach children to appreciate coyotes from a distance.
• Do not allow pets to run free. Supervise outdoor pets to keep them safe from coyotes and other wildlife, especially at sunset and at night. Small dogs and cats are especially vulnerable.
• Fence yards to deter coyotes. The fence should be tight to the ground, preferably extending six inches below ground level and taller than four feet.
• Remove brush and tall grass from around homes to reduce protective cover for coyotes. Coyotes are typically secretive and like areas where they can hide.
• Contact the DEC regional office for assistance if coyotes exhibit bold behaviors and have little or no fear of people, or if seen repeatedly during the daytime in a human-populated area or near residences. Seeing a coyote occasionally throughout the year is not evidence of bold behavior.
• Ask neighbors to follow these steps to prevent coyote conflicts
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