Date of this Version
The City of Austin acquires citizen reports of coyote (Canis latrans) observations or complaints through a toll-free non-emergency 311 telephone call system. The observed coyote behavior or activity reported by constituents is categorized into one of eight behavioral categories that correlate with observed changes in coyote behavior indicating an increasing risk to human safety. The categorical data is used to formulate indices of coyote behavior for accessing and monitoring the relative risk of urban coyotes to human safety over time. Behavioral indices with respect to established management zones are used to prioritize and target areas for preventing or alleviating bold or aggressive coyote behavior. Urban coyote management techniques focus on the dissemination of information to the public for preventing coyote habituation to humans, and trapping and removing coyotes from packs exhibiting behavioral changes associated with an increasing risk to human safety. Indices of bold or aggressive coyote behavior have decreased approximately 3.5% per month from December 2004 through March 2007, suggesting the impact and relative risk of urban coyote to people and pet safety has decreased since the implementation of the urban coyote management program in January 2005.