Coyotes out strolling and hunting in Eagle Rock

Photo by Tanya Ascencio

Tanya Ascencio of Eagle Rock looked out of her window this morning to find a pair of coyotes (two of them pictured)  roaming in her front yard before taking a stroll down the street.  Those coyotes, who were later joined by a third, were out for more than a morning stroll, however.  One of the coyotes was carrying a small dog in its mouth as it headed north on Ellenwood Drive near York Boulevard, she said. “It was kind of scary.” A few days earlier, Ascencio had spotted a sign nearby warning pet owners to watch out for coyotes.


  1. We moved away temporarily in part because of coyotes laying siege to our place.
    Even a 10 ft tall chain link fence will not keep them out- they run right UP it, and over.
    When we come back our yard will be surrounded by a 10 ft wrought iron fence
    ( straight parallel bars so there’s nowhere to run up on).

    Topped with the “coyote roller”

    People totally underestimate the coyote threat in LA.

    • Saying that coyotes are a “threat” and “laying seige” are pretty loaded terms. Coyotes don’t have an agenda, they’re simply opportunistic and there’s something in JG’s backyard that’s drawing them to it. Roller-topped fencing is a great step to take, but I would also suggest JG look to what’s inside the fence (and in the immediate neighbors’ yards as well) that’s making it a focal point for the coyotes, who seldom go repeatedly where there’s nothing for them. Otherwise JG might find the wily coyotes have dug beneath all that sturdy new wrought iron. If pets are the attraction it goes without saying they be brought indoors during the times the coyotes are usually most active (dawn and dusk). But it could also be standing water such as a pool or jacuzzi, food sources such fallen fruit or a veggie garden, or unsecured garbage cans — all of which can be made less appealing and/or accessible to the predators.

      • Right- I lost two cats to coyotes.
        Right again – I will make sure coyotes cannot dig under that fence.
        From what I’ve experienced, to call them opportunistic is an underestimation.
        Neighbors told me of incidents where a pack sends out their “lady”
        to attract and ambush the dog in the yard.
        They will stake out a place for weeks and go in when the time is right.
        Friends with dogs end up running pell mell out of Griffith Park with packs closing in. Couple of times they have gone for kids.
        I think siege is the right word,.
        I would bet there weren’t that many in LA– before LA.

        • running pell mell with packs closing in? gone for kids? siege?
          sounds like urban myth to me. we have plenty in EP and all I have to do is yell at them and they hightail it out of there fast.

          • call it myth till it happens to you.

          • -the pell mell event was a friend walking her dogs, at dusk
            near the Hollywood sign.
            The kids: 3 newspaper articles… One girl attacked in Griffith park,
            a mother interrupting a coyote dragging her 4 year old away.. Sylmar/ SunValley or so. Two Boys on bicycles getting chased and bitten.
            Siege- try keeping dogs/ cats in your yard anywhere near Griffith Park.
            Sure they hightail it… to the next street corner.
            Its nuts for any City to have that many predators roam like that.

          • well they did live here first. we had a big hill next door and there were a bunch of them living up there; never had any problems. then they built a house and they all got displaced. that was when the neighborhood cats disappeared.

        • you let your cats ,which are nasty predators themselves ,run around outside? i wonder how many songbirds they killed. And you have the nerve to bitch about coyotes?

          • Who let you run around outside?
            Get back inside your padded cell.

          • http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opinion/westview/cats-are-rats—-ask-the-songbirds-147422005.html

            Winnipeg Free Press – PRINT EDITION
            House cats kill millions of songbirds in Canada every year.
            VICTORIA — Canada’s 7.9 million house cats are the focus of intensifying public disquiet. There are those who loudly protest catastrophic predation by cats on wildlife and demand cat control. Others vociferously oppose any sort of cat constraint owing to their unique and iconic status that should exempt them from municipal oversight.
            The controversy is pitting neighbour against neighbour.
            At issue are the results of many studies confirming that more than two-thirds of house cats are permitted to prowl outdoors. Their hunting activities have been documented, confirming they destroy about 110 million songbirds each year in Canada and the United States, roughly 10 per cent of the total figure in Canada. But accumulating information suggests the actual mortality could be substantially higher still.
            A 1987 study in the U.K. by Peter Churcher and John Lawton indicated on average, each house cat at large kills roughly four songbirds a year. That figure, which has since been substantiated, indicates the cat-caused songbird loss in Canada could be as high as 20 million a year.
            Several regional and local studies indicate songbird mortality due to cat predation can be very high. Stanley Temple at the University of Wisconsin documented that house cats on the loose destroy 19 million songbirds annually in Wisconsin. Some newer estimates of the total North American songbird toll due to cat predation could top three billion annually.
            According to the Humane Society of the United States, outdoor time is not a prerequisite of cat happiness.

          • Cats are a non-native species. There is no other “pet” owner who lets their animal run freely throughout the neighborhood. Do dog owners let their dog out for the day? Do horse owners just let their horse run around all day and let them in at night? What about snake owners? It just boggles me that cat owners think they have a special right to let their animal out, unsupervised, all day. I have a vegetable garden and I am constantly discovering cats “scatching” and defecating in my garden. Do cat owners honestly think letting your animal out off leash in the neighborhood is ok? Seriously? The humane society says to keep cats indoors. I just don’t get it.

          • the cat-indoors thing is a very usa topic. in europe especially the uk cats go everywhere and nobody gives a hoot. what a silly argument in this thread. most cat breeds will make every effort to leave the house wether you agree or not. they must be the most undomesticated domesticated animals we keep.

        • JG, I wasn’t saying the words you used were wrong, just heavily weighted. Obviously your use of them is based on encounters that you experienced or read about that generate fear, and I’m sorry for your losses and aggravation. My suggestion is that you give coyotes a little less credit and try to look at them not as so patently evil. Instead look at the source of their success: us. Coyote proliferation is a direct result of the myriad ways we can be careless as humans. We are ultimately the ones creating the “threat” you feel. We are the ones inducing the “siege” you’ve endured.

          Coyotes are certainly 100% predatory, extremely smart, ridiculously adaptable, they utilize a variety of tactics to obtain prey, and they are definitely persistent. But above it all they are opportunistic. If we as individuals do as you’re doing and remove those opportunities the coyotes will go elsewhere in search of another one. But as long as others are leaving food out that’s meant for a stray cat, or dumping leftover french fries at the curb, there will always be another opportunity.

          • You are absolutely correct, Will. I’ve lived in Silver Lake for more than 30 years, and coyotes have always been here. Many years ago, Animal Reg used to trap them, but because of a public outcry, they no longer do that. That’s part of the reason for their proliferation…..that and as you say, attractive food sources that keep them coming back. I still see many people who leave food out for animals (have run into a couple of people who actually leave it for the coyotes!) and over the years, their population has spread to more urban areas. They are smart, wily, wild animals.

          • Totally agreed.
            I have never called them “evil” though.
            Underestimated threat, yes.

  2. People need to be responsible pet owners and not let their small dogs and cats roam outside unattended. This trio of very healthy looking coyotes are quite comfortable on the streets in broad daylight. Please be careful if you love your pets!

  3. Over the last ten years the domestic cat has become one of the coyote’s main food sources. USDA studies of coyotes show that that 86% have domestic cat remains in their digestive track. Domestic cat is found even in coyotes in vast unpopulated areas of the western U.S. The coyote has no natural predators in Los Angeles, except for the mountain lion in Griffith Park. We need some wildlife management of this varmit.

  4. The mention of the small dog being carried in one of the coyotes’ mouths is very sad. We all gotta eat, but it is very painful when pets get killed. I’m grateful that I have a large dog, and don’t have to worry so. Maybe I’ve been lucky, but I’ve never found it hard to scare coyotes away. I walk up to them, yelling, putting my arms out and act threatening — and they split. But of course they are going to come back … it’s their territory too.

  5. tanya, thanks for posting. and i hope you have alerted your neighbors and people are spreading the word and someone finds the time to post DANGER COYOTES DAYTIME signs around your neighborhood so people realize they need to keep their pets extra secure. what did the small dog look like? does anyone know who owns the small dog you saw? as horrible as it is it’s helpful. will is right, they are predatory, they hunt and scope and then nothing wins but them. they only move on when there is nothing left to eat. michael, it’s no urban myth. be thankful that you don’t believe it, but until it happens to you/loved one, or a neighbor, let people who know what happens spread the word.

  6. my 2cents.
    being an animal lover myself and having grown up with many dogs i would have no problem culling these coyotes. that the pc brigade will actually step infront of potentially lethal wild animals is no surprise to me. the argument that they were here first is just silly, hey why no lions or bears down town? i mean come on! its only natural, right?
    coyotes are a dime a dozen all over the usa. why do i have to worry about my pets i pay taxes for being taken by wild animals deep inside an urban area?
    or just get a proper dog like a ridgeback or wolfhound. i have seen ridgebacks bite brown bears in the ass in tulare county. no problem chewing a coyote on the way to my latte.
    instead of a fence, get a cross bow. silent and deadly.

    • this article is 3 years old. before that you can find an article from ’95. not much of a threat when you consider how many people there are in LA, how many coyotes and how often they come into contact with each other.

      • true, but when say your three year old daughter gets dragged down the garden path by her head by a wild animal things look a little different. whatyagonna say?
        They were here first. ‘sorry kid, deal with the trauma and those holes in your head, plus the battery of rabbies shots.’

        • “The second bite happened Wednesday, when a man apparently napping near the park’s Travel Town section said he awoke to find a coyote biting his foot.” Really?

          • yes, I would freak out for sure if one of my kids were bit by a coyote (I have 2). I just don’t see it happening (astronomically low odds). I worry more about things like people driving too fast, or the school budgets getting cut. this falls into the “exercise a little common sense and you don’t have to worry about it” category. unless of course you’re passed out in front of travel town. 🙂

  7. “A 69-year-old Palm Desert woman was bitten by a coyote Sunday morning during an early morning walk, the second coyote attack in the area in 10 days.”
    i guess we just need to, fence every mofo out there….just as long as some dog’s feeling’s don’t get hurt.

  8. google: coyote attacks toddler
    you will be surprised how many hits you get
    here is one…..

  9. Southern California is home to the largest and mosted adapted group of urban coyotes anywhere on the continent. It is our responsibility to know how to deter them on our streets and in our yards, for the good of all. Visit http://www.hearinthecity.org/?p=695 to find out what to do from wildlife experts.

  10. Parsing, says it for me: “…The ecosystem is out of whack.”

    “Too many coyotes…when say your three year old daughter gets dragged down the garden path by her head by a wild animal things look a little different…”.

  11. Coyotes are majestic enigmatic beasts, and seeing one always makes me glad there are still wild things among us.


    Yes they eat pets, but that’s why I keep my beloved kitty cat inside!

  12. Stupid gentrifying coyotes ! move back to the Westside !

  13. I’ve had cats all my life. Growing up we used to let our cats outside and the friendliest ones always met some horrible end while they were outdoors, either cars or dogs. Your cats will live MUCH LONGER if you keep them inside, letting them out shortens their chances of survival by as much as 10 years. Yes, you have to play with them and make sure they get some exercise and stimulation but isn’t that the fun of having a cat? People think it’s cruel to keep a cat inside because they show interest in going outside. Cats show intrest in being anywhere that they don’t have access to. My cat REALLY wants to go into my closet, am I being cruel by not letting him in there? What about the fridge? He’s pretty interested in that too.

    When I see outdoor cats near hilly areas in LA, I always think “you’re just feeding the coyotes”. Small dogs should also always be watched when they are in the yard, better yet, take them on WALKS and carry a big stick.

    • Cats show an interest in going outside because they go insane, locked inside.
      Just like you would, too.

    • Every person I have ever known who extolls the virtues of allowing cats to roam freely outdoors, “I don’t OWN (him or her), they’re a FREE being …” (blah, blah, blah … yes, I get it) has ultimately suffered some massive grief when it gets

      hit by a car
      ravaged by wildlife
      suffers injury and/or abscesses from fighting

      And you know what? It’s really hard for me to sympathize for anyone other than the creature itself, who met such a horrible end or experience because of careless owners with country sensibilities. Live on a farm, fine. Los Angeles ain’t no farm, and those farm animals are far more versed in survival than their city dwelling counterparts.

      I’m looking at you stupid ex-boyfriend, who lost (how many cats now?) I refuse to cry for your loss when you brought it upon yourself. [/end rant]

  14. My mailman just told me that there’s an abandoned house in the 800 block of Hyperion, that’s south of Sunset, where coyotes have taken up residence and are breeding. He said they’re out on the street when he’s delivering mail, in the middle of the day. It’s a shame, but yes, I don’t think we can let our pets out unsupervised anymore in this neighborhood…

    • this whole thread is full of urban myth. really? coyote squatters? do they have a meth lab going as well?

      • Michael, there’s more truth to it than myth. Back in 2005 there was a heavily overgrown section of our yard that I now call “coyote corner” after discovering a pair had gotten VERY comfortable within it for what, given its lived-in condition looked to be a relatively extended period of time. I cleared it ASAP and the coyotes moved on no doubt to the next nearest overgrown den-ready property.

        • I can picture your situation Will, it’s the living in a house thing that I am having a hard time swallowing.

        • They don’t call them wily for nothin’:

          Skilled at gaining an advantage, esp. deceitfully.
          crafty – sly – artful – astute – tricky – canny – shrewd

    • I happened to be in the field today, and drove by. In the middle of the 800 block of N. Hyperion Ave., on the west side of the street, there is a residence that has extensive overgrown foliage in the front yard, that could easily hide a family of animals. The house seems to be unattended moreso than abandoned, according to passersby with whom I spoke.

      I requested Animal Services to check the foliage, and our Senior Lead Officer will contact the property owner to request a lot clearing. There was no indication of human or animal trespassing.

      (213) 484-3400

  15. And why would our “ecosystem” be out of whack I wonder? Hmmm.
    All this anger and blame at the coyote for “being a coyote”. They’re just trying to eat and live their life in their neighborhood. If you go surfing off the coast and a shark bites into your board (or your leg) you don’t get enraged about the ecosystem being “out of whack”, you just realize it’s the price of being surrounded by nature and also being PART of nature. We’re not above it, we’re part of it. As are our cats and dogs. So, be smarter then the coyotes and protect yourself, your animals and your kids with some of the great advice given in earlier posts.

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