Ossining Town Police are reporting an increase in coyote sightings.
Police said there were at least five sightings during the month of July, including on Wyche Way, 150 Route 9A, Cedar Lane Park and twice at Fox Hill Condominiums. On each occasion, the coyote had left the area before police arrived. Contact the Town of Ossining Police Department at 914-762-6007 if you observe a coyote.
Below is more information from Ossining police on avoiding contact with coyotes:
First and foremost, coyotes live throughout upstate New York so observing one, especially during the spring and summer months, is not uncommon. Like most wild animals in our area, their main concern is food. Therefore, residents should never attempt to feed a coyote should they come into contact with one. Also, residents should control their garbage receptacles especially those kept outside. Coyotes will also feed off of bird food, and dog and cat food, so these need to be controlled as well. If you see open sources of food and/or garbage on your neighbor’s property, you should inform them to either contain them or bring them inside. If a coyote cannot gain access to food it will generally move on. As mentioned above, coyotes are predatory animals and can prey upon small dogs and cats. Because of this, you should always keep your animals leashed and feed them inside. Be on guard with your children, especially those that are still young. Keep them close to you and do not let them wander. Coyotes like hiding places to rest and raise their young. Thinning shrubbery is a good idea and closing off spaces that they can enter, especially underneath porches and inside crawlspaces, will help keep these animals moving and away from your property. For more information on this, check the Department of Environmental Conservation article on coyotes at this link.
Aside from being predatory animals, coyotes can carry rabies. This is another reason to completely avoid contact with coyotes. Keeping them off of your property is one thing, approaching them is another. They are not dogs and are not domesticated. They are wild predators. However, if a coyote approaches you, there are a few things that you can do to avoid an attack. Be aggressive. Do not cower or run away as the coyote will see you as prey and this can provoke an attack. Stay your ground. Yell loudly, throw things at the animal, wave your arms and do whatever it takes to scare the animal away. Pots and pans are great noisemakers. Do not try to catch the coyote; call the police. As soon as the threat is over, go indoors. For more information on this, check the Westchester County “Coyotes Can Carry Rabies” article at this link.