As spring birth of coyote pups approaches, Vancouver Park Board issues warning

Click to play video: 'Vancouver Park Board warns about coyote breeding season'
Vancouver Park Board warns about coyote breeding season
The Vancouver Park Board is warning users of Stanley Park that it's breeding season for coyotes, and there might be more of the animals out and about. Christa Dao reports. – Mar 1, 2022

With the spring birth of new coyote pups rapidly approaching, the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation is issuing a warning to the public.

Coyotes are more active in this season, the board said in a Tuesday information bulletin, as they establish and protect their dens, and seek food for their young.

“Typically only seen at dusk and dawn, they will often be spotted in the daytime and will behave more boldly to ensure their families are kept safe,” the bulletin reads.

“This could look like ‘escorting’ humans and pets away from their dens, and standing their ground or acting more defensively if they perceive a threat.”

Read more: Vancouver Park Board backs new $500 fine for feeding urban wildlife

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As spring gets underway, the board is reminding the public to keep its distance from the animals and discourage any habituation or conflict with humans.

That means keeping food safely stored, refraining from feeding coyotes, and staying on marked trails to avoid coyote dens, it said. Residents should also leash their pets, dispose of waste properly and slowly back away from any coyotes spotted.

“If the animal approaches, act aggressively by standing tall and yelling,” it said in the bulletin. “Most importantly, do not turn your back or run.

“Coyotes have a natural instinct to chase after prey and will pursue.”

Click to play video: 'West Vancouver teen chased by pack of coyotes'
West Vancouver teen chased by pack of coyotes

Last year, the Vancouver Park Board approved a bylaw amendment imposing a $500 fine for the offence of feeding urban wildlife. Public signage and multiple education campaigns about the dangers of feeding wildlife had failed to discourage the habit, the board noted at the time.

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At least 45 coyote attacks were reported in Vancouver between December of 2020 and August of 2021, five of which involved children.

The human-wildlife conflict prompted officials to close Stanley Park last September as they culled several problematic coyotes.

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