The cats play the same trick on my dog. They are smart enough not to run, but just walk casually past and no prey instinct kicks in. I like to think the coyote is at least as intelligent as my cats.
To give Lexie further credit we often see coyotes on our walks, and they troll regularly by the back fence, encouraged by a neighbor who throws out coffee cans full of bird seed, loaves of bread, carrots, corn cobs and on some occasions raw chicken meat. If you were a coyote you’d hang out here too. We’ve tried to tell her that this sort of feeding is detrimental to everyone involved. So much seed attracts such high densities of birds that diseases spread easily. The rest of us contend with huge amounts of droppings. Doves can develop a fatal condition called doughy crop when they eat bread, as it gums up their digestive system. And attracting mammals like bunnies is one thing, but it can create a chain reaction involving larger predators. We also see raccoons and coati mundi and hear some pretty vicious quarreling in the night. These are not animals you want to find cornered in your backyard.
Coming home from the airport late last night we turned onto the street and startled two javelinas who were munching happily through that neighbor’s newly planted petunias. They dashed off into the darkness, but the showy mass planting was completely gone this morning.
Yes there’s wildlife out there. I am always thrilled to spot a critter, but I also have the greatest respect. What do you think? A nuisance, or a treasure?