Urban wildlife

As the temperatures begin to cool down, the need for education about urban wildlife increases. Coyotes and bobcats can often been seen in Denton County, and nighttime and early-morning sightings of animals can be a disconcerting experience in the suburbs or even growing exurbs.

According to DFW Wildlife, shouting or hitting pots and pans are hazing techniques to use to make contact a negative experience for bobcats or coyotes. They naturally avoid humans, and by hazing, you prevent the animals from becoming too comfortable in yards. When jogging or walking, DFW Wildlife recommends raising your arms to appear larger and yell forcefully while looking directly at the bobcat as the simplest way to haze.

According to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD), nuisance control actions like removal cannot eliminate urban wildlife problems, although this can be part of the solution in some situations. Ultimately, TPWD officials say, public education is the solution.

Pets should be vaccinated and kept inside or confined in a kennel or covered exercise yard, or within the close presence of an adult, according to TPWD. Walk pets on a leash and accompany them outside, especially at night.

One thing that is sure to attract wild animals is food, so TPWD officials warn of feeding them or leaving food accessible. Garbage, compost and pet food should be secured. Even fruit trees should be monitored as fruit falls to the ground.

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