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S.F. National Forest Warns of Coyotes

A coyote jumps off a Santa Fe neighborhood street in April. (Journal File)
A coyote jumps off a Santa Fe neighborhood street in April. (Journal File)
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SANTA FE — After several reports of confrontations between hikers’ dogs and coyotes in recent weeks, Santa Fe National Forest officials are asking residents “to be alert to situations for potential wildlife conflicts and learn how to avoid them.”

A National Forest news release suggested hikers should be “mindful and respectful of the coyote’s habitat” by keeping dogs on a leash. The release also noted that under a Santa Fe County ordinance, any dog or other domestic animal within a county park, trail or open space area shall be restrained by a leash.

A dog owned by Santa Fe residents Houston and Alice M. Davis was attacked July 10 by a coyote while Houston Davis and their two dogs were hiking along a service road in the Millennium Lift area.

As previously reported in the Journal, hikers have told of other confrontations between dogs and coyotes in the ski basin in late June and early July.

“Because of their fear of humans, people aren’t generally attacked by coyotes,” said R. William Amy, the forest’s wildlife program manager. “Pets, however, could be especially if the coyote is stressed from being displaced by recent wild fires, drought, or is protecting a den of pups in the area.”

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