For Immediate Release, Feb. 9, 2017
ARCADIA, Calif. – In the wake of the City of Arcadia’s City Council’s unanimous vote (5-0) on February 7 to trap and kill coyotes, Project Coyote denounced the decision that reverses the city’s long-term approach to coexisting with coyotes without indiscriminate killing.
In January 2011, the City of Arcadia City Council voted unanimously to replace the controversial coyote trapping program that had been in force with a coexistence plan that educated residents on the habits and ecological value of coyotes, and provided them with tools for keeping their families and pets safe.
“The current Council’s decision to resort to trapping coyotes will likely result in increased coyote populations and encounters,” says Randi Feilich, Southern California Representative for Project Coyote. “This decision undermines the long-term goals established by the city five years ago and goes against the city staff report recommending more education and a non-lethal approach to the presence of coyotes.” That report can be read here (see page 753).
The city’s decision to hire a trapper, at a cost of $20,000 to Arcadia taxpayers, was confirmed by the City of Arcadia Deputy City Clerk, Linda Rodriquez.
“Trapping with indiscriminate snares is not only cruel, but can also kill non-target animals such as family pets and other local wildlife,” said Feilich “Animals caught in snares slowly suffocate or endure painful injuries often leaving orphans to starve.”
In addition, scientific evidence shows that trapping coyotes does not reduce their numbers. Coyote populations quickly bounce back even when as many as 70% of their numbers are removed. Since California State law prohibits trapped wildlife from being relocated, animals are killed when the trapper returns to check the snares.
Project Coyote has sent a letter to the City of Arcadia recommending adoption of a Coyote Management Plan like the model plan adopted by Calabasas, CA that emphasizes proactive education and aversive conditioning for habituated coyotes. These techniques, and other non-lethal methods, have proven successful in other communities across North America. “Public education and the reduction of wildlife attractants are effective methods of discouraging coyotes”, said Feilich. “Residents should remove outdoor pet food and not feed wildlife, pick up fallen fruit, and secure garbage cans. Moreover, because coyotes are naturally shy and are easily frightened, humane methods of control can be as simple as scaring them away.”
Feilich, joined by other coyote advocates, will speak before the city council urging them to adopt a long-term coexistence plan instead of killing at an upcoming city council meeting on Feb. 21st.
What: Arcadia City Council Meeting
When: Feb. 21, 2017, 7pm
Where: Council Chambers
240 W. Huntington Drive
Arcadia, California 91007
Project Coyote assists communities throughout North America through its Coyote Friendly Communities™ program which educates and equips urban and rural residents with the tools, resources, and expertise needed to foster coexistence. “The keys to coexistence are education, communication, science, and behavior modification,” said Feilich.
Project Coyote is a national non-profit organization, comprised of a coalition of scientists, educators, ranchers and citizen leaders promoting compassionate conservation and coexistence between people and wildlife through education, science and advocacy. We work to change laws and policies to protect native carnivores from abuse and mismanagement, advocating coexistence instead of killing. We seek to change negative attitudes toward coyotes, wolves and other misunderstood predators by replacing ignorance and fear with understanding, respect and appreciation.