Wildlife Issues in Canada: Coyotes Attack Joggers and Cyclists – Society

Wildlife Issues in Canada: Coyotes Attack Joggers and Cyclists - Society

Azi Ramezani loves Stanley Park in Vancouver. For a decade, she has been walking in a 400 hectare park on the Pacific coast. She walks on paved roads and paths and avoids hiking trails through dense forests and bushes. And, as she is now telling us, she never had a threatening confrontation with an animal. This changed in the late afternoon of 21 January.

He heard an anecdote and then saw a coyote chasing him, and then biting him. “He was right behind me and bit my right leg. The animal bites really hard. It’s not just a tweak. When they bite, the teeth go deep into the skin. Azi fell.

The animal let him go, but he feared another attack and asked for help. The cyclists stayed and stayed with him until medical attention arrived.

The story is not an isolated incident. A walk in Vancouver’s popular Stanley Park can be really risky. Because within three months, there were 15 attacks by coyotes on recreational athletes and walkers in the city park of the metropolis of Western Canada. Several paths through the park have been closed.

According to estimates by the park administration, about a dozen coyotes live in the area. Two of them had to be killed at the beginning of the year due to several aggressive behavior towards people. The park administration, the “Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation”, closed some hiking trails and gave warning signs.

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In addition, the stand will provide information on how exposure to coyotes can be avoided and how people should behave in the event of an imminent attack.

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Wildlife is getting closer to people in cities – like this coyote in San Francisco.Images of Mauritius / Minden Pictures / Jaymie Heimbuch

Coyotes, also known as prairie wolves, are shaped Of a small wolf. They are about 50 centimeters high, one meter long and weigh about 20 kilograms. In North America, they originally lived in the west of the continent and in the Dryer areas. They have now spread to almost the entire continent except the polar regions, and their numbers are increasing. Their natural enemies were wolves and jaguars.

According to an IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) report, coyotes have benefited from the decline in the number of wolves and jaguars. The IUCN classifies coyotes as “not endangered” on the Red List of Endangered Animal and Plant Species. Crossbreding with wolves and dogs may also have contributed to the spread of coyote.

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In autumn 2009, a deadly coyote attack in Cape Breton National Park in Canada created worldwide sensation. One of the great young talents of the Canadian folk scene, 19-year-old folk singer Taylor Mitchell was attacked and wounded by two coyotes while walking.

Until now, coyotes’ attacks on humans have been considered rare. Experts in Vancouver do not yet know exactly why the attacks in Stanley Park are increasing now. There have been 15 attacks since December 1, 2020, with most of the victims being joggers. 13 people were severely cut. Two cyclists were also attacked.

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Presumably, the coyotes did not feel attacked, but saw humans as prey. It is their nature to chase the running animal and bite its legs from behind. “It’s like you hunt like a deer,” says Simon Gravel, Stanley Park Conservation Officer.

Therefore, people should not walk on footpaths in the forests of the park. In addition, coyotes have clearly lost their fear of humans, imagines gravel.

While it is strictly forbidden to feed wildlife when threatened with severe fines, which can range from an instant-issued parking ticket of $ 345 to a maximum fine of $ 50,000, it appears that everyone is by them Does not regulate.

“We have gained a lot of information in recent months that parks visitors to feed animals,” said Gravel of the “Vancouver Sun”. Park visitors who scatter food for birds may also cause the fear of humans to subside.

Azi Ramezani feels that it will take him several months to recover from serious injuries to his leg muscles for surgery. It is uncertain whether it could be as active in the future as it was before Coyote’s attack. “I want to tell everyone that these are very serious attacks,” she says. And he is surprised: “We have cohabited with these animals for many years. Suddenly we see this change in behavior. “

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