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Coyote and Fox activity increasing in the Magic Valley

Aggressive fox also spotted in TF city limits, along with reports of missing cats
Coyote
Posted at 10:34 AM, May 26, 2023

TWIN FALLS, Idaho — There have been increasing reports of coyote and fox sightings in the Magic Valley.

Residents in the area are being reminded to keep their dogs on a leash when outside of fenced property areas, not only is it the City Code, it can save your pet.

Fish and Game officials were recently made aware of two non-fatal coyote incidents with off-leash dogs.

One was near Hagerman near Justice Grade, where an aggressive coyote bit an off-leash dog. The other was in the Auger Falls trail system, where a hiker with her untethered dog reported a run-in with several aggressive coyotes.

A third incident was reported in the parking lot of the Twin Falls Fred Meyer, where a man was aggressively approached by a fox. Several domestic cats have also disappeared in the area.

It is the peak of the coyote and fox breeding season. These animals often establish their dens in parks and near rivers due to the increased availability of food. It also means they are protecting their young, resulting in these animals being more territorial.

Fish and Game offers the following tips to help prevent coyotes and foxes from becoming habituated to urban areas:

Homeowners

* Remove or secure coyote attractants — such as pet food, trash or dog feces — as well as attractants for native species that coyotes are known to prey on. Coyotes typically eat small animals such as mice, voles, squirrels, gophers, raccoons, skunks and foxes.

* Don’t leave your dog outside unsupervised, particularly in areas where coyote conflicts have been known to occur.

* If possible, ensure your property boundaries are secure by keeping fences in good repair and letting your dogs out for bathroom breaks only in fenced areas, particularly at night.

* Clear away brushy areas around your property that coyotes may see as safe denning or hiding spots.

Recreationists

* Keep dogs on-leash when using trails.

* Consider bringing a loud noisemaker with you – a whistle, bell or horn – which can be helpful in scaring off a coyote.

* Carry bear spray and know how to use it. It’s not just for bears and can also be used as a highly effective tool against other wildlife if an unsafe encounter occurs.

* When hiking, make noise to announce your presence.

* Be present in the moment, and aware of your surroundings and your dog. Don’t use earbuds or headphones while hiking.

* If you know that an area has recently experienced dog-coyote encounters, consider using a different trail system or an entirely different recreation area in the Magic Valley.

For more information, contact the Magic Valley Fish and Game Regional Office at (208) 324-4359.