Coyotes spotted in Tamarac neighborhood

Man blames coyote for mauling his cat

TAMARAC, Fla. - A man living in Tamarac shot video of a coyote prowling his back yard.

"I've personally seen them ten times," Steve Buck told Local 10's Roger Lohse on Thursday.

A person living in the Woodlands shot video of a coyote in his back yard on Thanksgiving morning. The animal walked around before going back into the woods.

Buck said he first started seeing coyotes lurking on the fairways of a golf course in the Woodlands last summer. Then, in September, he said a coyote mauled his cat Rickey.

"We've been living here for ten years. He's been out all the time, no problem whatsoever. All of a sudden, there's a coyote here and he's gone," said Buck.

Buck hired a professional animal trapper, Noel Hanson, to help him catch the coyotes. He even received a permit from the State of Florida to use foot traps.

But Hanson said the canines are cunning.

"They're probably some of the most difficult animals to capture," added Hanson.

Sherry Schleuter, with the Wildlife Care Center in Fort Lauderdale, said people who have seen the coyotes should keep their garbage secure and their pets close. If you see a coyote, make a lot of noise, throw something at it, or even spray it with a hose -- anything to make the coyote want to leave.

"What we'd like to do is discourage the coyotes from feeling safe around humans," said Schleuter. "Understand that this is a necessary hazing process because it will keep the coyotes safe and keep their pets safe."

On the edge of the wooded area where Buck set his foot traps, he and Lohse found a dog collar that read "Fletcher." The person who answered the phone number listed on the collar said their Maltese got out about a month ago and hadn't been seen since.

Buck said he won't rest until his community is coyote free.

"They're getting a little brazen and I just don't want it to happen to anybody else," said Buck.

The Wildlife Care Center is sponsoring a workshop at the Broward County Library on Stirling Road in Hollywood next Tuesday to teach people how to live with coyotes.

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