WOMAN REPORTS BEING BITTEN BY COYOTES ATTACKING DOG IN DENVER
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DENVER, Colo. – A 51 year old Denver resident reported that she was attacked by three coyotes while walking her dog near her home on Saturday evening.

The woman, who lives on the 3900 block of S. Oneida, stated that she was crossing the street with her dog, a 75-pound Labrador retriever, when she and her dog were surrounded by three coyotes. The woman reported that when two of the coyotes attacked her dog, she attempted to intervene. She said that when she attempted to defend her pet, she was scratched and bitten by one of the coyotes.

The woman brought her pet to a veterinary hospital and visited Swedish Hospital herself. She was released the same evening.

After being notified about the incident by Colorado State Patrol at 11:00 PM Saturday evening, Colorado Division of Wildlife officers began a search for the animals involved. Searches continued through Sunday evening, but were unsuccessful. DOW officers will continue to work the area to inform residents about the incident and will engage Denver authorities in the effort to address the situation. If the coyotes responsible for the incident can be located, the DOW will remove these animals by lethal means.

“The DOW takes injuries to humans very seriously,” said Liza Hunholz, Area Wildlife Manager for Denver. “We will continue to work with Denver and all other Front Range communities to ensure that all citizens are aware of the presence of coyotes and know how to protect themselves and their pets. Likewise, we will continue to support cities and towns in developing a management plan that meets the needs of their constituents, such as Greenwood Village and Lakewood have done. ”

Last week the DOW hosted city leaders and decision makers at a coyote symposium in Jefferson County to discuss the coyote issue and train representatives on biology, outreach methods, and laws and regulations pertaining to coyotes. Cities and towns across the Front Range were encouraged to work with the DOW to create coyote management plans that meet the needs of their constituents.

Most conflicts between people and coyotes occur when coyotes are able to find food near human residences. Sometimes coyotes find food left out for other wildlife. In other cases, these adaptable predators learn that they can hunt other wildlife and pets that frequent residential neighborhoods. But the result is that when coyotes lose their natural wariness of the human environment, they can become aggressive towards people The DOW strongly discourages feeding of wild animals, including coyotes. In fact, feeding of coyotes and foxes is illegal in urban areas.

If a coyote approaches you:

-Be as Big, Mean, and Loud as possible
-Wave your arms and throw objects at the coyote
Shout in a deep, loud and authoritative voice
-DO NOT RUN or turn your back on the coyote
-Face the coyote and back away slowly
-If attacked, fight back with your fists and feet

The DOW encourages members of the public who encounter an aggressive coyote to immediately call 303-291-7227. If the incident occurs after business hours, contact the Colorado State Patrol (303-239-4501) who will contact a wildlife officer.

To learn more about living with coyotes, visit the DOW web page, at:
http://wildlife.state.co.us/WildlifeSpecies/LivingWithWildlife/Mammals/CoyoteCountry.htm

Cougar encounter in Sonoma County
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I hunt in some pretty remote places throughout the West and I don’t think I am as wary of cougars as I am in places in my home county where these predators become accustomed to humans.

Just last Weekend, not too far from a state park I frequently run in, TWO cougars confronted Nicole Lentz as she was walking her dog. The lions chased her into a neighbor’s back yard.

“They were trying to get at (my dog) past me. I had my big rain boots on and I was having to hit them” with a leash, she said. “They were raising their paws, they were growling and hissing. They were trying to attack her.”

Lentz said she kicked the more aggressive animal at least five times as she was backing up to get into a neighbor’s back yard.

This is just another example of how banning mountain lion hunting in California has played out as more lions come in conflict with an expanding urban population.

You can read the news story here in the Press Democrat

Elk Rescued by hunters from Hole in the Ice
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Farmers, ranchers and hunters all share a common trait of respect for animals.  It is not more evident than when an animal is injured or trapped in a life threatening situation, when their heroic nature comes out.

In a video from the Rocky Mountain Elk foundation, Ron Niziolek filmed such a rescue of a Cow elk who had fallen through the ice and was in freezing water over her back.  The You Tube video is just over six and a half minutes long. 

Much to the rescuer’s dismay the cow is quite unappreciative of the help, and in her panic jumps back in the water.  Eventually they are able to get her out again and hazed away from the hole. 

This isn’t the first time hunters and ranchers have come to the rescue of wildlife.  A rancher in Nevada spotted two bulls with locked antlers  and effected a rescue.

Just how big is a Wyoming Wolf?
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wyo-wolf081

I received this e-mail of a picture taken last spring of 2008, when the State of Wyoming opened season on wolves.  It is interesting to hear the perspective of a Wyoming resident on the hunting of wolves.

First two wolves of the first five wolves (shot legally) near Pinedale and Big Piney, Wyoming after the season for wolves was opened up. I would venture to say they are ‘just a little bit bigger’ than the local coyotes! These were caught, with two others, in a calving pen, killing livestock…..not eating the livestock, just killing it.

I’m thinkin’ my 340 Weatherby isn’t too much gun for one of these critters….. fortunately the wolves I saw on Wanda’s place weren’t near this size…… they were 3x the size of our coyotes,though…..these guys have been eating really well! Acutally, eating TOO WELL! It’s no wonder the elk and moose calves only have a 20% chance of making it to 6 months old in the Yellowstone area with thesebig boys around! Amazingly, the Colorado Division of Wildlife has requested anyone catching a wolf or wolverine in a leg hold trap to”please try to release it alive”……. that could be a pretty goodtrick! I was expecting much smaller wolves to be in the ‘not safe for wolves zone’ …… wonder how big the wolves are that ran these two out of the ‘safe zone’? 

Dont think I want to snowshoe or cross country ski in Wyoming anymore……. expect to see these critters in Colorado pretty soon….coming to a favorite deer or elk haunt near you!

Mountain lion sighting
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This morning I was greeted by the news that a San Mateo resident has filmed a mountain lion in the city. At the same time Colorado Department of wildlife sent me this story below which I feel is very timely for us in California.

From the footage I saw, it looks like a young male or female, probably driven into close contact with people due to the territorial nature of mature toms.  An adolescent lion will resort to feeding on petsin suburbs when larger more aggressive males drive them out of deer wintering area in the foothills.
YOU MAY BE ATTRACTING MOUNTAIN LIONS TO YOUR PROPERTY WITHOUT EVEN KNOWING IT

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Colorado’s abundant wildlife is often cited by residents as one of the things they like best about living here. During the mid and late 20th century, Colorado’s growth brought people in closer contact with deer, elk and other wildlife species, to the delight of a new generation of wildlife watchers.

But one of these wild animals is the mountain lion, a powerful predator that while secretive by nature, has become increasingly visible in recent years. And as some Coloradans have discovered, when mountain lions follow deer and other wildlife prey, it brings them into to people’s neighborhoods.

(more…)

Why you need to watch for wildlife on the road
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PhotobucketJust the other day as I was travelling around the countryside calling on feed clients, I watched a motorist clip a spike buck crossing the road in the middle of the day.  In fact last August, I had a similar incident while driving home from archery league when a spike buck came out of a hayfield and hit the side of my car.  $2800 later it was back to new.

This morning a friend sent me a photo that I think shows how much different it is when it is a moose crossing the road.  because they are long legged, the car or truck bumper hitting their legs sends them directly into the windshield which can be downright deadly.
Photobucket

So here are some suggestions for driving defensively against wildlife:

  1. Use your high beams when possible.  It is your best chance to see animals before they reach the road.
  2. Be ultra aware at sunrise and sunset when animals are most active.  Also during migration times when weather hits and deer, pronghorn, and elk are on the move.
  3. If you see one there may be others.  Watch out for fawns following does in the spring and summer, and rutting bucks chasing does in the late fall.
  4. Watch out for animals feeding on mowed roadsides and medians after a Fall rain.  A quick shot of green feed will attract hungry critters.
  5. Creeks that cross the road with brush and trees on one side or both are a common travel route.  You won’t see wildlife until they are right on the road.
A warm fall , a nice rain, and a mowed roadside is a magnet to wildlife.  This is just FEET off of Highway 101 in California

A warm fall , a nice rain, and a mowed roadside is a magnet to wildlife. This is just FEET off of Highway 101 in California

Idaho fish and game traps elk near Treasureton
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About 250 elk are being fed by Idaho Fish and Game near Treasureton, Franklin County, in southeast Idaho as part of a baiting and trapping operation.
Elk have been fed by Fish and Game in that area for the previous three years to reduce depredations on hay stacks on private land, to reduce elk-cattle contact, and to help keep animals away from the highway.

Because elk have been fed for three consecutive years in the same area, the Idaho Department of Agriculture requires that the animals are tested for disease. The most important disease being monitored in elk is brucellosis, which causes elk and cattle fetuses to abort.

Elk successfully trapped and deemed healthy will be transferred to another area in eastern Idaho where population objectives for elk have not been met. This action will help decrease the numbers of elk at this location in the Treasureton area, and it is hoped it would help reduce depredations to private landowners and risks to motorists on Highway 91.

Any trapped elk that test positive for brucellosis would be humanely dispatched and the meat donated to food banks.

Fish and Game asks that the public stay away from this baiting site so that the trapping operation can be conducted as efficiently as possible.

Boy Injured by Coyote in Weld County, Colorado
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This story hits home for me since I have been planning a pronghorn antelope hunt in Weld county.  The Story follows from the Colorado DOW:
DENVER, Colo. – A nine year-old boy from Erie suffered a minor injury Thursday afternoon when a coyote snapped at him on the Vista Ridge Golf Course in Erie.  The boy and his brother were snowboarding and had stopped at the bottom of a hill at about 3:30 pm when the coyote approached, circled the boy, and lunged at him twice.After the incident, the boy returned home, where his mother contacted the Erie Police Department to report the attack. She then took the boy to Children’s Hospital Clinic. He was released early Friday morning.

The Colorado Division of Wildlife worked with assisting agencies to track and locate the offending coyote.  A coyote was found in proximity to the incident and subsequently killed.  It has been sent to the DOW Fort Collins lab for testing, which is standard procedure after an incident such as this.

“Coyotes are naturally fearful of humans, but occasionally a coyote becomes aggressive and must be removed for public safety,” said Larry Rogstad, Area Wildlife Manager.  “It is imperative that people report encounters with aggressive coyotes right away so that we can monitor the activity and intervene when necessary.”

Most conflicts between people and coyotes are due to someone feeding these wild animals, whether intentionally or otherwise.  The DOW strongly discourages feeding of wild animals, including coyotes.  Coyotes also cause concern for pet owners, as these animals view pets as a threat, prey, or possibly even a mate.

If a coyote approaches you:
Be as Big, Mean, and Loud as possible
-Wave your arms and throw objects at the coyote
-Shout in a deep, loud and authoritative voice
-DO NOT RUN or turn your back on the coyote
-Face the coyote and back away slowly
-If attacked, fight back with your fists and feet

The DOW encourages members of the public who encounter an aggressive coyote to immediately call 303-291-7227. If the incident occurs after business hours, contact the Colorado State Patrol (303-239-4501).

To learn more about living with coyotes, visit the DOW web page, at:
http://wildlife.state.co.us/WildlifeSpecies/LivingWithWildlife/Mammals/CoyoteCountry.htm

The Town of Erie offers additional information on living near coyotes on their website.  Visit

www.erieco.gov and select “Coyotes – FAQs” from the Living in Erie section.

Do Elk pose a pathogen threat?
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The Denver post reported that elk droppings have been linked by genetic testing with the E. Coli infection that made eight children in Colorado ill. The Story on Denverpost.com

In the town of Evergreen, elk, and consequently their droppings are all over the athletic fields and lawns. Officials have issued a warning to students not to eat outside and to wash their hands after being outside.

Personally I think that today’s suburban children have not been exposed to ENOUGH pathogens. We have become such a clean society with out anti bacterial gels and rigorous hand washing, that children have no exposure to microbial pathogens, and do not develop a beneficial microbial population that can combat intestinal disorders.

My three sisters and I grew up on the Family farm in close proximity to dirt, animal waste and animal secretions such as saliva, mucous and blood. When it came time for my sister to do lab work for her masters degree on Cryptosporidium (a pathogenic bacteria), she was the only student in the lab not to develop a digestive upset. Why? she was exposed at an early age and her digestive microbial population developed to resist pathogens such as Crypto.

We see it all the time in third world countries where local inhabitants can drink water that would sicken us in an instant. It is all about exposure. So get your kids outside at an early age so they can develop a natural immunity. Camping and hiking and hunting and fishing all will help expose them to bacteria good and bad. Just try to keep the elk pellets out of their mouth….

Bowhunter kills mountain lion stalking his partner
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It doesn’t happen very often, but when hunters are calling to elk, sometimes it attracts other predators.  Steve Tintzman and Barry Lemon know first hand.  While calling to a bugling bull elk, with a cow elk call, a cougar was attracted to the sound and Was stalking Tintzman.  Lemon shot it once with his traditional longbow just yards from his hunting partner.

“As it got closer and closer, I saw it much too low to the ground,” Lemon said. “Steve was behind me cow calling. When it got about 25 yards away, I saw that it was mountain lion.”

It was coming right at the camouflage-clad hunter.

“Maybe 15 yards away, it crouched down low and it was flipping its tail,” he said. “It was looking beyond me. Its eyes were glued on Steve.”

The big cat stopped, slowly turned and began walking away.

“I thought, ‘That’s a good sign,’ ” Lemon said. “I thought I’d just let it walk away.”

Suddenly, the mountain lion turned and began creeping right toward Tintzman, who had no idea the animal was anywhere near. Lemon began to inch backwards. He already had an arrow nocked in the string of his traditional longbow.

“It was crouched down low and heading right at Steve,” Lemon said. “My mind was racing. All my experience in the outdoors told me the lion could cover 15 yards to zero in a matter of seconds. It was moving fast.”

The Full Story in the Missoulan

Infolinks 2013