From a resident in the Isles:

“Here is a video clip that was picked up by my front door security system recently in the Isles. Take a look. In the lower right of the opening frame, you will see a dog-like creature with a long tail.  It wanders behind the pillar, but eventually reappears, followed shortly by a second one.  They got my attention and I sent the video clip to the FL Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission to get their thoughts.  My suspicions were correct; they are Coyotes!  Below is their full response to my inquiry.  Those of you with small dogs want to especially beware!

Reply from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission:

It appears you have at least two coyotes living in your neighborhood. These two are likely either siblings or a mating pair that have territory in the area. Believe it or not, this is a fairly common occurrence across Florida. Coyotes have been confirmed in all 67 counties in Florida and we receive reports regularly from communities in Sarasota county.

 Coyotes like to live in neighborhoods because of food resources. People tend to unknowingly draw in wildlife such as coyotes because of the potential foods in communities. Garbage, pet food, bird seed, fallen fruit, etc. can all be attractive to coyotes in addition to natural food sources of raccoons, armadillos and rodents that are commonly found in communities as well. Because of this, I encourage residents to secure all attractants (pet food, garbage, bird seed, fallen fruit, etc.) from coyotes and other wildlife.

 Coyotes can pose threat to small pets, especially cats and small dogs just like other wildlife species in the area. Typically, coyotes predate pets when they are not supervised. Simply keepings cats indoors and dogs on short leashes can prevent most coyote predation attempts.

 Residents can also use hazing techniques (such as yelling, throwing rocks, using air horns, etc.) to scare the coyotes away as they see them. Coyotes are generally not a threat to people and are usually easily scared off.

 I have attached several documents concerning coyotes to this email. They include hazing techniques, FAQ’s and general information from the FWC, the Humane Society, the University of Florida, Pinellas County and the USDA Wildlife Services. I hope they are useful.

 Additional information can be found on our website at the links below.

 The FWC offers public coyote presentations to help communities coexist with them. If you think your community would be interested in a presentation, please let me know and I’d be happy to schedule one.

 I hope this helps. Please feel free to contact me directly if you have any questions.

 Thank you for contacting FWC.

 Angeline Scotten

Senior Wildlife Assistance Biologist- South Florida

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

3900 Drane Field Road

Lakeland, FL 33811

(863) 648-3200

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