Coyotes (canis latrans) is a canine species native to North America. They have adapted easily to urban landscapes, but are rarely a problem. They are small, resourcefull, and normally live alone or with a mate. They are territorial during late winter mating season (Jan.-Mar.) and while raising pups May-June. They are most often seen during mating season and when the young coyotes start leaving the family pack in autumn. They live in ravines or green spaces, feeding on small mammals like mice, voles or rabbits, and plant food if necessary. They have been known to prey upon cats and small dogs.
Normally they are timid, but any aggressive behaviour should be reported to Ottawa animal control (call 3-1-1). Please contact your Councillor or an Ontario wildlife control officer if you see coyote in residential communities (links below). Coyotes pose little real danger to people, but to prevent problems in rural areas, you should follow a few common-sense habits:
- Do not leave children or pets unattended outdoors.
- Walk dogs on a leash and keep cats indoors if possible.
- Do not leave pet food outside.
- Store garbage in an animal-proof containers or inside. (also discourages racoons, crows, rats, mice)
- Motion-sensor lights can discourage coyotes and other animals.
Fox & Coyote [source]
You can normally scare a coyote away by making noise. On rare occasions, coyotes get accustomed to people and may become bolder. Coyotes can also interbreed with dogs (known as Coydogs) and may form packs. In these cases it is sometimes necessary for wildlife officers to catch and kill them.
Coyotes (Canis latrans) are natural enemies with wolves, but they do share some genes with dogs and wolves. A "coywolf" doesn't really exist, but "coydog" does. The Eastern Wolf (Canis lycaon) looks very similar to a coyote - but it and the Gray Wolf (Canis lupus) are separate species. Great Lakes wolves are hybrids of Gray Wolves and Eastern Wolves.
Identifying Coyote, Wolf, Dog & Fox:
A Coyote has a bushy, thick tail, which it holds low to the ground - a dog holds their tail up in the air. The coyote has a narrow snout and small nose pad, with large ears relative to its head The wolf has a broad snout and large nose pad, with small ears relative to its head, and with more rounded tips. Wolves generally have gray, black, or white fur and are larger than coyotes. When an adult coyote weighs around 10 kg, a wolf can be around 25 kg. The legs of a coyote are visibly thinner than those of a wolf. Wolves have a precaudal scent gland marked with a patch of dark hair on its tail. A fox is smaller than both, with a bushy tail held high, and may be a reddish colour.
March 11, 2019 This morning on Meadowshire Way in Rideau Forest, a resident reported a grey "coywolf", very large and twice the weight of a coyote. (Could be a "coydog" or Eastern Wolf as wolf-coyote hybrids don't exist in the wild.)
January 2019 Numberous coyote sightings in CGYC reported to CGYC Homeowners Association.
October 5, 2018 Included just for fun! - Fran Monaghan @frannyhammer reported a moose running down Old Mill Way (near Tim Hortons)
February 23, 2018 Several coyote sightings in Carleton Golf & Yacht Club were reported to the CGYC homeowners association. Sadly, coyotes killed a resident's dog a few weeks ago.
October 6, 2014 Coyote sighting in the morning by rural Osgoode home with a dog in the backyard. Howls and yips day and night.
September 26, 2014 Coyote seen mid-day around the Manotick United Church. It appeared thin and was not at all afraid.
March 12, 2013 Coyotes howling at 2 am reported at Carleton Golf and Yacht Club by Fairway Dr. (south side, western end near the first green). There were also reports of foxes living in the golf course on the other side of Fairway Drive.
March 6, 2013 Marina Drive south of Manotick: large dog (?) passed by a house and across the frozen Rideau River (Video). 2.5 feet high at the shoulder, 70-90 pounds, very muscular, broad nose, 3-inch footprints.
February 6, 2013 A pet cat that had excaped from the house was reported killed by a resident on Island View Drive just south of Manotick. Two coyotes had been seen in a field behind the house the day before, and seen again 3 days later digging where the body had been found.
February 1, 2013 An unconfirmed report of a wolf on a trail behind Wisteria Cresent, south of Hunt Club between Riverside and Uplands. Described as "large like a german shepard, big fluffy tail, reddish colour, walked like a wolf". Police checked the trails.
January 30, 2011 4:30 PM: Wolf was reported to the CGYC homeowners association by a Rideau Valley Drive North resident (6 km. south of Manotick). It was seen two days later about 4 PM at the corner of Upton Rd. and Ridea Valley Dr. N. feeding on a deer carcass.
December 2012 Foxes reported on the course north of Fairway Dr. by several residents in Carleton Golf & Yacht Club.
February 13, 2012 7:30 PM: Several coyotes spotted in Carleton Golf & Yacht Club.
Wolf & Coyote [source]
July 23, 2011 1:30 PM: Coyote on Knights Drive, Rideau Forest reported in our Message Board.
May 10, 2010 A coyote was spotted in Carleton Golf crossing Marina Drive from Timagimi Court to Echo Park around sunset. It was larger-than-normal size.
September 2009: New reports of Coyotes running throughout our community are once again being documented... Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) is aware of our concerns but, to date, has not taken any substantive action. (Ottawa Councillor Doug Thompson)
February 2009: A healthy, mature coyote was reported to the CGYHA homeowner association by several residents. It was on the Rideau River ice by the intersection of Marina and Fairway Drive travelling north toward the Hickman Conservation Area.
January 2008: Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR 1-800-667-1940) have estimated 20 dogs and cats are missing in the Greely area. In 2 cases, coyotes are confirmed as the killers. Area sightings: Greely West Drive, Woodstream, Parkway Rd., South Village, Sunset Lakes, Albion Sun Vista, Stanley Park, Orchardview, Remmington Way, Lakeland Estates, Old Prescott Rd., Emerald Links, Shadow Ridge, Roger Stevens Drive, Oxford Mills.
- Links to other sites:
- Coyotes, information, reports (Discover Southern Ontario)
- City of Ottawa: City of Ottawa wildlife information
- Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) 1-800-667-1940
- Ontario Ministry of Agriculture: Livestock, Poultry and Honey Bee Protection Act - compensation for damages by dogs, wolves or coyotes.
- Distinguishing between Coyotes, Wolves and Dogs
- Difference Between Wolves and Coyotes :: Image
- Difference Between Wolves and Dogs
- Wolf sightings in Ottawa (Discover Southern Ontario)
- Ontario Government - Fish & Wildlife services, 10 Campus Dr, Kemptville 258-4846
- Scott Smithers, MNR, Ministry of Natural Resources, Kemptville (email@example.com)
- Lisa MacLeod, MPP, Government of Ontario (firstname.lastname@example.org)