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December 05, 2013
GROSSE POINTE SHORES — Coyotes are getting cocky near the north end of town.

“They went into a garage on Colonial Court in St. Clair Shores and confronted a resident,” said John Schulte, Grosse Pointe Shores director of public safety.

A contractor, Critter Removal, placed traps on the grounds of the Edsel & Eleanor Ford House, including the estate’s meadow across Lakeshore, which abutts Colonial Court.

“They have one in custody, as we call it,” Schulte said. “It’s going to be driven way up north and dropped off.”

Many coyote citings recently are in the area of Morningside in Grosse Pointe Woods, he said.

Schulte consulted a state Department of Natural Resource officer about dealing with coyotes.

“There’s two ways you can address this issue,” Schulte said. “You can trap them or you can shoot them.”

They can’t be shot in Grosse Pointe Shores.

“We have an ordinance against discharging a firearm,” Schulte said.

Trapping can backfire, too, by catching the wrong type of animal, such as opossums and raccoons.

“There’s not much we can do, frankly,” Schulte said. “We ask residents to use extreme caution and call us.”

A link is posted from the public safety section of the municipal website to Critter Removal advising how to shun coyotes.

There’s also advice on raccoons, skunks, squirrels, pigeons and more.

“(Critter Removal) will come out and set up a trap in your yard if necessary,” Schulte said.

Roger Desmet, owner of the company, based in New Baltimore, explained the increase in coyote sightings.

“Litters are starting to venture out,” he said. “Earlier, the pups clung together. Now, they’re starting to spread their territory a little.”

Urban coyotes are wild animals and, therefore, unpredictable.

If confronted, people should act as though facing a stray dog, Desmet said.

“Back away as calmly as possible,” he said. “If you show fear, if you turn and run, it may decide to chase, just as with an aggressive dog.”

He said clearing the Ford House property may take a couple of months.

Captured animals aren’t destroyed.

“We have grounds we have access to release on,” he said.

Visit gpshoresmi.gov for the company link.

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