December 10, 2018 7:03 pm
Updated: December 10, 2018 7:10 pm

City unveils plan to manage coyotes after 19 Montrealers report bites

WATCH: Following a series of coyote sightings and attacks, the City of Montreal has announced a series of measures aimed at scaring the animals away. As Global's Anne Leclair explains, the plan is to make the animals fear human interaction.

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The City of Montreal has unveiled a new coyote management plan, and it’s a first in the province, according to city officials.

The move comes after an increase in sightings and run-ins with the animals across the island. A total of 19 Montrealers have reported being bitten since June 2017.

“The goal is to protect the population from incidents with coyotes,” Ahunstic-Cartierville Mayor Émilie Thuillier said.

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READ MORE: Montreal residents worried after coyotes bite 3 children in separate incidents

The plan essentially favours teaching humans to co-exist with coyotes instead of systematically capturing and relocating them when they turn up in heavily populated areas, which officials insist has proven to be ineffective.

“They tried to do it and it doesn’t work. If you just capture and relocate coyotes, they will come back and perhaps with bad behaviour.”

The city is spending an estimated $150,000 on the new plan. It will focus on educating the public to change basic behaviours related to organic waste (compost) disposal, keeping domestic animals on a leash and most importantly, refraining from feeding coyotes.

READ MORE: Montreal implementing measures after three children attacked by coyotes

City officials will intervene to capture and euthanize an animal in exceptional cases only. Hazing, or sending people to scare away the animals will continue to be the “go-to” method to push them away from heavily populated areas and parks.

“We will take action with a hazing campaign first, and if necessary with capturing and euthanizing,” Thuillier said.

Officials are asking Montrealers to continue calling the info coyote line to report sightings, so action can be taken accordingly.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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