A coyote in Junius Heights. Photo courtesy of Becca MacAskill.

Recently, there have been several coyote sightings in our neighborhood.

Though they may pose a threat to small pets, coyotes have also sparked more positive responses from neighbors.

Last week, one neighbor saw a “big, well-fed” one in Junius Heights near the 5700 block of Worth Street. She said the coyote didn’t seem intimidated by the two 130-pound dogs accompanying her and warned neighbors to be careful with their outdoor cats and small dogs.

Another neighbor reminded us that a “well-fed” coyote hasn’t necessarily been snacking on our furry friends. Common foods are rodents, snakes, bugs, squirrels and more.

A few years ago, urban biologist Brett Johnson talked to The Advocate about coyotes and their place in East Dallas.

Johnson said coyotes and other predators such as bobcats and feral hogs are common in our neighborhood because of the green space within the White Rock Creek corridor.

However, at the time, Johnson had been a Dallas biologist for 13 years and said he hadn’t seen an uptick in coyote populations. It was just that frequent social media posts publicizing coyote sightings had made it seem that way.

Here’s a safety tip: If any neighbor sees a coyote, they should shout but not back away.

Johnson also gave some insight into why some coyotes might be sticking around. When neighbors feed outdoor cats, they’re not just feeding cats. Rodents and other smaller mammals, which are the coyote’s prey, are likely also munching on that food.

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