City of Burlington has eliminated a second coyote identified in recent attacks on residents


The City of Burlington, using the expertise of a Certified Wildlife Control Professional, has eliminated a second coyote identified by its victims in recent unprovoked attacks on people in south-central Burlington. The City would like to thank the Halton Regional Police Services (HRPS) for the support who were on hand to ensure public safety and stood ready to assist if needed.

A third worrying coyote is still at large.

In the past few weeks, the city has received seven reports of unprovoked attacks on people. Animal Services employees have played a key role in tracking down the coyotes, which have been identified as responsible for all of the attacks.

The coyote is described as having the same characteristics, a small sand-colored coyote, like the sixth and seventh coyote attacks September 10 and 17 updated map attached below and report coyote sightings using the form at burlington.ca/ coyotes.

City of Burlington Animal Services staff have conducted ongoing joint operations with the HRPS and the Certified Wildlife Control Professional in attack areas to track down and eliminate the coyotes. Local residents can see this multi-agency task force in their neighborhoods and it is important that local residents do not interfere with these operations. Due to the fluidity of the situation, it may not always be possible for residents to be informed of the operations taking place in the surrounding community. It is important that crowds do not accumulate during these operations. This is important both for the safety of local residents and so that crowds do not scare off the pursuing coyotes. The increasing challenge is that coyotes are no longer alive at this time of year and are more mobile. The priority of this interagency taskforce is to eliminate the aggressive coyotes based on our approved protocol to the City of Burlington’s Coyote Response Strategy.

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The City of Burlington met with senior officials from the Department of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) Provincial Services Division to seek expert advice on the current situation and to confirm further immediate steps to address a family of aggressive coyotes in south-central Burlington. MNRF staff experts said that under no circumstances should coyotes be fed by humans. When humans feed coyotes, intentionally or unintentionally, coyotes become familiar with humans, no longer fear humans, and exhibit increasingly aggressive behavior, as is now happening in south-central Burlington. From what city officials have shared with MNRF science and veterinary experts, experts are convinced these localized attacks are from coyotes that have been conditioned to see humans as a food source. This learned behavior creates an environment in which wild animals are conditioned to be comfortable with direct human interaction and may be dependent on humans for sustenance. Once a coyote crosses the line of acceptable interactions with humans, the coyote is must be eliminated for reasons of public safety due to a situation that they did not bring about.

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Anyone who is attacked by a coyote is advised to seek immediate medical attention and to report the attack to the Halton Area Health Department and the City of Burlington Animal Services at [email protected] or 905-335-3030.

Municipalities are responsible for taking appropriate measures to manage sightings, encounters and attacks by resident coyotes and taking appropriate action. If a coyote attacks a person, the city has a council-approved Coyote Response Strategy that is currently being followed to prioritize and manage that situation.

Burlington is a city where people, nature and business thrive. To learn more about Burlington, sign up at burlington.ca/subscribe and follow @CityBurlington on social media.

Fast Facts

  • In 2015, Burlington City Council approved a Coyote Response Strategy that provides guidelines for preventing and managing conflict involving coyotes.
  • On September 14, 2022, the Burlington City Council approved Personnel Report CM-26-22, Update to the City of Burlington’s Coyote Response Strategy and Response to Recent Serious Attacks on City Residents. This report outlines coyote management recommendations and strategic actions that must be taken to enable the city to be proactive in managing coyotes and wildlife to protect its residents.
  • These are the first reported coyote attacks on humans in Burlington.
  • Coyotes are native to North America and live in urban and rural areas.
  • Food sources such as mice, rats, and trash are readily available in urban areas and attract coyotes to residential neighborhoods.
  • Concerns about feeding wildlife directly or indirectly can be reported to Animal Control at [email protected]
  • Hand-feeding and ground-feeding of wildlife on private or public land is prohibited and punishable by the city’s Lot Maintenance Bylaw (49-2022).
  • To request a coyote attractant audit of your yard by City of Animal Control officials, please email [email protected]
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Links and Resources

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Map of coyote attacks

Map of Coyote attacks

Quote

Marianne Meed Ward, Mayor of Burlington

“We can breathe a small sigh of relief at this news, although our thoughts remain with all the victims who are recovering from these unprovoked attacks. None of us would like to have to eliminate a wild animal, but we have learned that once animals lose their fear of humans, they cannot learn it again and become a permanent threat to our community. We will not rest until public safety is restored in our community. It is important that residents do not intentionally or unintentionally feed wildlife and properly dispose of food waste. We all have to do our part.”

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Media contact:
Jeff Crowder
communications consultant
[email protected]



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