A coyote in one Franklin neighborhood has been so elusive some were beginning to wonder if it existed at all.
Donna O'Malley submitted proof last week when she captured the coyote on camera. She spotted it in her backyard Feb. 20 at about 7:30 a.m. She had seen it trotting in her backyard before, its bushy tail bouncing with each stride, but she was never lucky enough to have a camera ready.
"(The coyote) is not bothersome; it just appears to be passing through," O'Malley said. "I am just mindful of it and never let our dog out without being extra careful and watchful."
Tom Isaac, a wildlife biologist with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, said O'Malley is right to be protective of her dog.
"Once in awhile they'll take a cat, or even a small dog," he said.
The DNR said never to feed coyotes and to make sure not to leave out pet food.
"If you see a coyote, the best thing to do is to harass it and scare it away," Isaac said. "Put some fear into it until it's out of sight."
Coyote population estimates in Southeastern Wisconsin are not known, but Isaac guesses there are probably a few dozen in each suburban community.
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