City of Wauwatosa Sets Up Traps to Catch ‘Pest’ Coyote After Dog Attack

WAUWATOSA, Wisconsin (CBS 58) – Starting today, Monday, Jan. 10, the city of Wauwatosa plans to get rid of the pest coyotes that roam neighborhoods.

It comes as some residents, especially those in the Fisher Woods area, are on high alert following a coyote attack that killed a dog.

Shauna Kleinhas is a resident who had a frightening encounter with a coyote while in her backyard with her German Shepherd, Jerry Lee.

“He kind of looked at us, stared at us. I ran inside my house in complete fear,” Kleinhas said.

She has been on high alert ever since.

“Since that moment I’ve been out at you know five or whatever with my dog, and I can’t see anything, my heart is pounding, you know, you look around, constantly playing defense,” a Kleinhas said.

A Yorkie was recently killed in the yard of a Fisher Woods house. Now, in an effort to locate it, the city has hired a company to set traps on the properties of consenting residents. Once trapped, the coyotes will be killed.

Kleinhas says she sees no other solution.

“I think if they have moved them, the chances of them coming back to the area are high,” Kleinhas said.

Michelle Lute is the Carnivore Conservation Officer for Project Coyote, a national group that advocates for wildlife. She says it’s true, the coyotes can’t be moved, but Lute doesn’t think killing them is the answer.

“We advocate preventive and proactive measures,” Lute said. “We’re not advocating cruel inhuman trapping because that doesn’t prevent the situation. It removes a singular coyote, you don’t even know if that coyote was involved in the incident.”

The Department of Natural Resources (MNR) says food and rodents in backyards will continue to attract coyotes, even if they are only a local resident.

Nathan Holoubek is a Wildlife Biologist for MNR. Holoubek says the mere sight of a coyote is nothing to worry about.

“Usually they take care of their own business and we take care of ours,” Holoubek said. “If they are following you or expressing interest in you or your pet … always make sure your pet is on a leash when you are on the go, if you are in your yard be there with small dogs. ”

He says to keep noise generators handy to deter them, such as a box with coins.

Lute and Holoubek both say that it is normal for coyotes to cohabit with humans, even in urban areas.

However, Holoubek says it’s also legal for people to set coyote traps on their properties, and that there is a legal coyote hunting season in Wisconsin.


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