Mental Floss

Coyotes: They're Just Like Us


I know this is an animal post, but it's not exactly ripped from the annals of Cute Overload. A coyote recently entered a Quiznos in downtown Chicago, heading straight for the drinks cooler, where he remained lodged until he was brutally (it's not just me--watch the video) removed by an Animal Control officer. I know coyotes attack, but is this kind of treatment really necessary? It was cowering next to a row of SoBe Leans--most likely wounded and described by witnesses as "passive." In almost all the coverage, some kind of roadrunner joke was made. Which is fine. But is that to rationalize the violent wrangling? Coyotes aren't exactly strangers to city life. According to studies conducted by Stanley Gehrt, who teaches environmental and natural resources at Ohio State, coyotes who live in cities are are integral in controlling the population of Canadian Geese and irksome city vermin. In addition, city dogs live longer:

Urban coyotes survive far longer than their rural cousins. A coyote living in urban Chicago has a 60-percent chance of surviving for one year, while a rural coyote has a 30 percent chance of living for another year. Most coyotes pose little threat to humans. The problems generally start when people feed coyotes, even if that feeding is unintentional. Â