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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:06 pm 
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I had to dig to find the original article.

"MSNBC wrote:

Coyotes kill woman on hike in Canadian park
'Very unusual and is not likely to be repeated,' wildlife biologist says

updated 10/28/2009 9:43:18 PM ET

TORONTO — Two coyotes attacked a Canadian woman while she was hiking alone in a national park in eastern Canada, and authorities said she died Wednesday of her injuries.

The victim was identified as Taylor Mitchell, 19, a singer-songwriter from Toronto who was touring in support of her new album on the East Coast.

She was hiking solo on a trail in Cape Breton Highlands National Park in Nova Scotia on Tuesday when the attack occurred. She was airlifted to a Halifax hospital in critical condition and died Wednesday morning, authorities said.

Coyotes, which also are known as prairie wolves, are found from Central American to the United States and Canada.

Wildlife biologist Bob Bancroft said coyote attacks are extremely rare because the animals are usually shy.

‘It's very unusual’
Bancroft, a retired biologist with Nova Scotia's Department of Natural Resources, said it's possible the coyotes thought Mitchell was a deer or other prey.

"It's very unusual and is not likely to repeated," Bancroft said. "We shouldn't assume that coyotes are suddenly going to become the big bad wolf."

Royal Canadian Mounted Police spokeswoman Brigdit Leger said other hikers heard Mitchell's screams for help on Tuesday and called emergency police dispatchers.

Police who were in the area reached the scene quickly and shot one of the animals, apparently wounding it. But the wounded animal and a companion coyote managed to get away.

Paul Maynard of Emergency Health Services said Mitchell already was in critical condition when paramedics arrived on the scene and had multiple bite wounds over her entire body.

"She was losing a considerable amount of blood from the wounds," he said.

‘So excited about the future’
An official with Parks Canada said they blocked the entrance to the trail where Mitchell was attacked and were trying to find the animals to determine what prompted such an unusual attack.

"There's been some reports of aggressive animals, so it's not unknown," said Helene Robichaud, the park's superintendent. "But we certainly never have had anything so dramatic and tragic."

Mitchell was a folk and country musician who was nominated for a 2009 Canadian Folk Music Award in the Young Performer of the Year category.

"Words can't begin to express the sadness and tragedy of losing such a sweet, compassionate, vibrant, and phenomenally talented young woman," Lisa Weitz, Mitchell's manager, said in an e-mail. "She just turned 19 two months ago, and was so excited about the future."

Well....

Apparently this wasn't such a freak accident. Here's the thing.

  • Coyotes - like Starlings, English Sparrows, Gray Squirrels, and Pigeons - have found a niche living with human beings. More and more major cities are reporting that coyotes have infiltrated their premises, and live quite comfortably on animals that frequent cities. My sister lives on the edge of the Santa Ana desert, and for years found that she couldn't keep any cats. Coyotes get them. (They do however give something for her Great Danes to hunt.) But they're even in Central Park, so it isn't just people living near the wilderness.
  • Apparently we're witnessing evolution right in front of our eyes. Biologists now report that wolves - long a deadly enemy of coyotes - have apparently successfully mated with coyotes enough times that there are now some "super coyotes" roaming in and around our cities. This new strain is bigger, badder, and much more capable of viscous mischief.

If you've never had a big dog, you might not appreciate what it could be like to be attacked by a coyote. If you've never done surgery, you might not appreciate how easily a large canine can kill a human.

I've actually given this a lot of thought, if only as "martial theory." My roommates from college and I used to "play fight" with one of my larger (200 pounds) Danes. He of course loved it.

I also have an EXTREMELY strong Ridgeback who has an annoying habit of giving you flying kisses when you least expect it. And that flying kiss? Just a hair away from being a flying leap to the throat. Interesting... as if his puppy play was preparing him for fighting the way our Sanchin does the same.

I'll talk more later about this. Gotta get ready for work.

- Bill


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:13 pm 
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Quote:

Coyote + wolf = new breed of predator
‘Coywolf’ hybrids fill open evolutionary niche in northeast U.S.


By Jennifer Viegas
Discovery Channel
updated 9/22/2009 9:57:23 PM ET

New DNA evidence reveals that coyotes have bred with wolves in the the northeastern United States, turning mice-eating coyotes into much larger animals with a hunger for big prey, such as deer.

The resulting "coywolves" may, however, benefit ecosystems, since they appear to be filling niches once occupied by wolves that were eradicated by humans.

Image

"We are finding repeatedly that hybridization is more common than we used to think," lead author Roland Kays told Discovery News.

"This is an evolutionary mechanism to generate new variation that can work faster than genetic mutation," added Kays, curator of mammals at the New York State Museum.

Kays and colleagues Abigail Curtis and Jeremy Kirchman took mitochondrial DNA samples from 686 eastern coyotes housed in museums, or obtained by donations from hunters, fur trappers and various government agencies. The scientists also measured 196 coyote skulls.

The study, outlined in the latest issue of Royal Society Biology Letters, reveals that some of the largest specimens were indeed coyote and wolf hybrids.

Given where these animals came from and the degree of documented genetic diversity, the researchers can tell that a few coyote females mated with male wolves north of the Great Lakes.

Subsequent coywolf population expanded into western New York and western Pennsylvania, which also have populations of pure coyotes.

Bigger than coyotes, smaller than wolves
Coywolves aren't too hard to pick out from pure coyotes.

"They are larger, both in terms of body size and skull dimension," Kays explained. "Their skulls are especially wide compared with their length." World's oddest animals

"Male coywolves are larger than females, while coyotes are not," he added. "Coywolves also tend to be more variable in terms of color, with red, dark and light morphs."

He said coywolves tend to hunt larger prey than coyotes do, scavenging or actively seeking deer, for example, which is possible given the coywolves' larger size.

Coywolves even sound different.

"Their vocalizations are deeper than western coyotes," he said. "They readily make use of forest habitat, while western coyotes tend to avoid it and prefer open areas."

Not mating per usual
While hybridization happens and "is a natural process," according to Kays, it's also not mating per usual. Wolves often "persecute coyotes rather than breed with them," he said, so it's still rare for these distinct, yet related, species to make love and not war.

The same holds true for dogs and coyotes.

"Generally coyotes kill dogs; dogs avoid coyotes," he said, but interbreeding does sometimes occur, although he and his team found very little DNA evidence for it in their sizable sample from the Northeast. He believes "coy-dogs" are more common in the Southeast.

Earlier this year, University of Calgary professor and wolf expert Marco Musiani determined that human breeding of dogs led to a dominant gene for dark fur to be spread, through interbreeding, to wolves. Black fur is now commonplace in wolf packs.

Climate change has diminished snow in northern environments. White wolves used to benefit when snow was more plentiful, but now black fur provides them with greater stealth when the wolves hunt in snowless places.

Musiani said: "It is somewhat ironic that a trait that was created by humans may now prove to be beneficial for wolves as they deal with human-caused changes to their habitat."

Kays said a proposal to re-introduce wolves into the Adirondacks "has basically been put on hold while we figure out the eastern wolf taxonomy."

Although the coywolf is moving into the wolf's former ecological niche, he said that "wolves are much larger," so they are still the optimal keystone predator for former wolf-dominated regions.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 3:21 pm 
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According to Wikipedia it may have been coywolves that attacked her
Quote:
In October 2009, Taylor Mitchell, a 19-year-old folk singer on tour, died from injuries sustained in an attack by a pair of coyotes while hiking in the Skyline Trail of the Cape Breton Highlands National Park in Nova Scotia, Canada. Recent studies have shown, however, that the large northeastern coyotes responsible for this attack may in fact be coyote-wolf hybrids (or coywolves) due to absorption of wolves when coyotes moved into eastern North America.

Coyote are common around here, and legally hunted, a former co-worker regularly hunts them and sells their pelts.

We used to live in an apartment complex on the edge of town and at that time it was rather isolated from other development. Running past the complex is a former railroad line that has been turned into a hike/bike path and leads to a wooded park just outside of town. At night we frequently could hear coyote moving up the path from the park past the apartments, which was neat but of course you would not want to let pets stay outside. Walking the path or in the park we could occassionally catch a glimpse of one, but they were too shy to allow more than that.

I constantly tell my kids that coyote may look like a family pet but they are potentially dangerous wild animals and must be treated as such. I also tell them they are not allowed to go on the paths or into the wooded park alone, but that is not just because of coyote.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2011 2:29 am 
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According to Native American Legend the Coyote, will be the last species on earth. They are respected for their intelligence and adaptability. The greatest threat to livestock is often during the spring/summer months while they are struggling to find enough food for their litter. We don't generally see many here (probably because most folks around here tend to shoot them on site), however it is quite chilling to hear a bunch of them get vocal on a summer night. I've sometimes heard what sounded like hundreds, and sometimes from all directions around the house, like you're surrounded. I would love to know just how many are out there at times like that. At least I think I would. 8O

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 19, 2011 7:59 am 
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My first interraction with coyotes was at the National Training Center at Ft Irwin. The scraggly beasts would take anything you were foolish to leave more than ten feet away from you.

My parents lost a dog to coyotes when I was just a baby. The coyotes didn't leave much, from what I was told.

None of those up here in Alaska, of course. Plenty of wolves, though. They've been terrorizing people living in the remote southeastern region the past two winters.

And bleeding hearts still protest Alaska's aerial wolf hunts.

:snipersmile:

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 20, 2011 6:50 pm 
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Jason Rees wrote:

None of those up here in Alaska, of course. Plenty of wolves, though. They've been terrorizing people living in the remote southeastern region the past two winters.

And bleeding hearts still protest Alaska's aerial wolf hunts.

:snipersmile:

And then you have this.

WHAS Channel 11 wrote:

Prospect discusses ways to control deer population in city

by Gene Kang

WHAS11.com

Posted on February 14, 2011 at 3:07 PM

Updated Monday, Feb 14 at 6:05 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11)- Residents in Prospect could soon be armed with a bow and arrow to help curb the deer overpopulation.

Deer can be a problem, because they can destroy gardens, vegetation and cause car accidents.

However, some people in Prospect do not like the idea of killing them by allowing bow hunting and sharp shooters into their neighborhoods.

Tina Brunjes, with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife, talked to a packed room about possible deer overpopulation in Prospect and how to handle it.

She says the number of deer can double in size within two to three years.

There are three solutions on the table for discussion to reduce their numbers: trapping and relocating deer to an area outside of Prospect which can be very stressful to the animals, injecting deer with birth control to thin the herd or killing the deer through bow hunting and hiring professional sharp shooters.

Debby Schroeder does not like the last option, saying it sounds unsafe and could be inhumane.

The committee chairman says they still have to conduct a survey and hear what residents think before making any type of recommendation to the city council and mayor with a written report in July.

Oh my...

So you have a choice here. You either let the wolves live amongst us and cull the deer population, or you let sharpshooters (or Bubbah with a six pack) cull them.

Or you could have both the wolves and the hunting...

But if you remove the linx, the bobcats, the wolves, and the coyotes, expect to see a lot more of this.

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Race car hits deer

Car hits deer

Rally car hits deer

Deerstrike Helmet cam

Did I mention the problem with the spreading of Lyme's Disease and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever? Oh yes, I see that in my health care data. Got deer? You also have that. The more deer, the more disease.

Cute little buggers? Sometimes not so much.

And so then we have to rely on Bubbah to solve the problem.

Image

If you ask me... I'd rather have some wolves and coyotes culling the deer population - even if it means keeping the kids close. Just sayin...

- Bill


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 Post subject: Photo release????
PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2011 3:04 am 
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Hey! War dya get ma pictur? Ya coulda at least asked furst! :multi:

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2011 3:57 am 
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Image


Image

This is my house in the woods but really a stone's throw from a huge center with every store you can think...

But in the back woods I have spotted deer, coyotes and foxes [plenty of those]...deer is on my land constantly chewing on flowers and bushes...

One night I saw a big coyote frozen in my motion lights in the back yard.

Not far way an old lady was attacked and killed by a coyote.

Many times at night, have seen deer trotting on the side of the road.

I have a 100 feet + driveway...and I find myself carrying this ....

Image


....hanging my left shoulder for a quick draw...if getting stuck wheeling my trash barrel to the curb late at night for morning pickup.

One afternoon I saw a big fox dart from the woods and chase a cat across the street and beyond into more dense woods.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2011 4:04 am 
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Van Canna wrote:

I have spotted deer, coyotes and foxes [plenty of those]

Well...

I say shoot you some venison for dinner, leave some "remains" for the coyotes, and invite one of those foxes for your evening meal. With candlelight and a bottle of wine of course...

;)

- Bill


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2011 4:26 am 
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:lol:

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2011 4:32 am 
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Van Canna wrote:

I find myself carrying this ....

Image


....hanging my left shoulder for a quick draw...if getting stuck wheeling my trash barrel to the curb late at night for morning pickup.

Nothing like bringing an advantage to a fight with Nature.

If there were that many coyotes - or maybe coywolves - in my area, I'd be tempted to bring my Ridgeback with me on the walk. Any dog willing to harass a lion for his master would be a difficult meal for even a large coyote. And I don't believe they'd know what they'd be in for when facing Maverick. I've gotten tendinitis in my hands and elbows just from walking him and trying to convince him not to walk me. Ya gotta love an animal bred to challenge a beast.

Image

Or... Maybe a native of Ireland - partially responsible for the extinction of wolves on the Emerald Isle - would be in order. I've always wanted one of these. Maybe one day.

Image

- Bill


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2011 9:08 pm 
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8O

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2011 10:09 pm 
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http://community.adn.com/adn/node/155669

Local perspectives on the wolf issue.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 21, 2011 11:34 pm 
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Bill Glasheen wrote:

If you ask me... I'd rather have some wolves and coyotes culling the deer population - even if it means keeping the kids close. Just sayin...

- Bill


The problem with wolves is that they have no natural predators. They've been re-introduced into the wild, and their numbers are quickly reaching the point at which they'll be more numerous than they ever were. They are also breeding with not only coyotes, but other canine species as well.

State and federal sharpshooter programs work well. Joe Sixpack inside township limits, not so much... but state wildlife management should have the freedom to manage the numbers of all manner of wildlife, including wolves, which should open the door to hunters outside township/city limits.

Ammonia works as well on wolves as it does on dogs, but I'd hate to rely on it. I'm alot more reluctant to wander trails on the AF side here, because my options are more limited than if I'm on the Army side.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 22, 2011 2:22 am 
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Hey, Jason!

Jason Rees wrote:

The problem with wolves is that they have no natural predators. They've been re-introduced into the wild, and their numbers are quickly reaching the point at which they'll be more numerous than they ever were.

Actually that's a false problem. They're at the top of a food chain. Their population is limited by available prey. It all starts with the number of photons hitting vegetation, and finished with the number of meals available to canis lupus.

The only problem would be the degree to which they're poaching on farm animals. Is that a concern in Alaska? Got sheep? (Methinks not so much.)
Jason Rees wrote:

They are also breeding with not only coyotes, but other canine species as well.

It's theoretically possible, but... Wolf/dog mixes create an animal not so unfriendly and threatening. In fact several species of dog are actually genetically close to wolves.

Coyotes and wolves generally are enemies. The mixes are a relatively new phenomena, and we don't know where that's going. Truth be told, the wolves will be killing off the coyotes to diminish the competition. For the most part they are blood enemies.
Jason Rees wrote:

State and federal sharpshooter programs work well.

That's all fine and good until you kill so many wolves that you have another problem (e.g. the deer or other grazing animals).

It's all supposed to be a balance. Man doesn't exactly have a good track record getting it right.

- Bill


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