Thankful for Coyotes

Coyote numbers are on the rise here in the urban corridor of Southern Ontario. With these numbers, more urban myths (hello, coyotes stalking evening strollers), misconceptions and questions grow, too. Can coyotes find a place in our urban green spaces, parks and even in our backyards? This recent post from a Chicago-area blogger of GardenInACity answers some questions and the photos are amazing. A must read if you love wildlife, even when that wildness gets pretty close.

gardeninacity

Judy saw a coyote trotting down the street in front or our house a few days before Thanksgiving. Hurrah!

Coyotes enjoy the suburban life. Photo from chicagourbanresearch.com. Coyotes enjoy the suburban life. Photo from urbancoyoteresearch.com.

I like to think that this means we now have our own neighborhood coyote, maybe even our own pack. We need some predators around here to control the number of rodents, especially (speaking as a gardener) rabbits.

Another suburban coyote. Another suburban coyote. Photo from urbancoyoteresearch.com.

This may seem heartless, but I think accepting predators has to be part of the ethic of wildlife gardening. Predators are a necessary part of a healthy wildlife community. Without them, things get out of whack, and not just in the form of girdled trees and plants chewed down to the ground. Overpopulation among herbivores can lead to starvation, disease, and extensive damage to the natural flora.

Red-Tailed Hawk on our back fence. Red-Tailed Hawk on our back fence.

Until now, the most visible predators around our garden…

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