Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Too Close For Comfort
Our four Eastern Coyote pups are becoming increasingly comfortable in our garden near the house. It appears that this little guy is eyeing the lettuce bed shade cover remembering the great fun it provided on another day. It is not a good sign that these wild animals are completely at ease this close to us. How this issue will resolve itself is not clear at this point in time.
A weed killing plastic tarp is held in place by four water filled juice bottles. Earlier we found the tarp askew and the bottles scattered about. Now we understand what caused the disarray. On this day the rain water that collected on the tarp is serving as drinking water. According to the Department of Environmental Conservation, the water that we have been carrying to our garden plants during this drought is what has drawn these wild animals so close to our house.
The wooden railing in the foreground of this picture is right outside of the kitchen door. A lesson in fear of humans is desperately needed. I tried to deliver such a lesson but my actions may have made the matter worse.
One of these pups and I came face to face this afternoon. I was returning from work down near the road. The coyote was heading toward the driveway. When I crested a knoll we were face to face at close range. Yelling and waving my arms about caused the coyote to turn and lope off. It used my path to the back to find cover in the bushes. In a moment it reappeared at the edge of the path and sat down. This did not please me. I got my stout walking stick and headed toward the animal. It moved into the bushes but would go no further. No way was I going into the maze of bushes. At best, this encounter was a draw.
If the coyotes carry off a neighbor's pet and we can prove that it happened that way, the DEC will trap and relocate these animals. Lacking that we are on our own. Part of our problem is the admiration that these animals foster. Intelligence and confidence pour from the eyes of a coyote. A sly smile seems to always cover their face. They likely pose no real danger to us and I cannot imagine inflicting pain or death on them. We will see how this adventure unfolds.