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Coyote Warning

At least one West Little Rock apartment complex has issued a coyote warning to residents to be alert and take precautions to protect yourself, your family and your pets.
LITTLE ROCK, AR - At least one West Little Rock apartment complex has issued a coyote warning to residents to be alert and take precautions to protect yourself, your family and your pets.

At least two coyotes have been seen in the area of West Little Rock. Arkansas Game and Fish says you're most likely to see them along forest edges, near pastures, and often around clearings where people have chopped down trees.

At Gander Mountain Sporting Goods, Hunting Supervisor Horace Niccum helps hunters looking to attract coyotes. There are a plethora of products on the shelves used to hunt or trap coyotes, like urine and food scents the wind carries to bring the predators closer. "Everything I have is to bring coyotes in, nothing to drive them away."

Niccum says coyotes are not looking for human contact, but a food source. "By the time you see them, they've seen you for a long time, and they're generally not going to bother you if you keep doing what you're doing. If you stop and try to run away from them, or run at them, they're going to get into protection mode or territorial mode."

Niccum says if you're walking your dog early in the morning or late at night when coyotes are typically out looking for food, put bells on your shoes. The loud noise scares most wild animals. He also recommends keeping your dog on a leash.

While at least a few people in West Little Rock say they've seen coyotes in the area, Niccum has never heard of any coyote attacks on humans. He says just to make sure to keep your kids safe, don't leave little ones unsupervised. "If a little kid is all by themselves, the coyote might be curious to come up and see what it is, but most kids are going to be with parents or older brothers or sisters. There's usually enough noise they're not going to hang around."

Another tip to keep coyotes away is to keep your garbage can clean with a tight lid on it, and don't put your trash out a day in advance. If you live in an apartment complex with a dumpster, trash bags should be tied tight with nothing left outside the dumpster.

People typically see coyotes in the spring and fall, but it's not unusual to see them in the winter months scrounging around for food.
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