A coyote attacked a three-year-old Ontario child in a Toronto suburb, and locals are raising the alarm about the animal’s growing presence.
Residents in Oshawa, a city nearly 60 miles from Toronto, say more and more coyotes are not afraid of human contact per the Durham Region. Since July, coyotes have bit three young children in the area.
City officials meet to talk about the child’s bite and the increase of that particular animal in the area.
On Sept. 29, a coyote bit the child in the evening. Police officials say the hospital staff treated the child for non-life-threatening injuries. The child’s mother said the boy was playing in a sandbox before the attack in a social media post. She said the bite was “enough to break the skin” and that she “turned her back to talk less than five feet” before the animal attacked.
Coyotes With No Fear
In a similar incident, a resident complained that a fearless coyote also frequents her neighborhood. Debbie Wong said her coyote “is becoming more and more aggressive” in its hunt for food.
Wong saw a familiar limping coyote from her porch. She tried to shout it and scare it away, but it did not flee.
The woman said the animal didn’t run away and just glared at him as she screamed and yelled.
In Wong’s case, her concern is for a nearby school and numerous residences that have children. When she and others contacted city officials, they sent the group to a website.
“All they’ve done is put up a ‘Coyote in Area’ sign,” the woman said. “Well, this coyote can’t read.”
City officials will meet on Oct. 4 to talk about a Coyote education and response strategy for residents. Currently, the city does not respond to reports of wildlife in city areas. It currently educates residents, monitors sightings of the animal, and installs signs and fencing to alert residents. Some Canadian regions are setting up traps and enforcing $500 fines for individuals who feed coyotes.
Hunting Canadian Coyotes
In a February posting, the Ontario Federation of Hunters and Anglers worked to clear up myths about coyote hunting.
According to the website, coyote hunting is open all year with no limits. The animal is thriving in the southern half of the province. But that’s in rural areas, of course.
According to the Toronto Star, the city had 1,777 sightings — an increase of 516 sightings from 2019 (1,261). With three months left in 2021, there are 1,389 sightings.
Amid the increase in sightings, the region’s health department urged residents to stay away from wild animals because of rabies.
Dr. Pepi McTavish, Durham Region associate medical officer of health, said, “Incidents such as these are very unfortunate. It is very important for residents to remain vigilant and avoid interactions with wild animals, even if the animals appear sick or injured.”