No cause for concern
Decision to dispatch coyote in Bay Roberts was right one — mayor
Officials with the Town of Bay Roberts say a recent incident involving a coyote was out-of-theordinary and residents should be vigilent, but not concerned.
A licenced hunter was called in to dispatch a coyote in the Mad Rock area on Sept. 26 after an out-of-province female tourist came upon the animal during a walk along the Shoreline Heritage Walk.
The tourist was alarmed by the sighting, and went to a cafe in the area to report the incident.
The town’s municipal enforcement officer, Perry Bowering, went to the area and got within 20 to 30 feet of the animal. Bowering snapped photos and forwarded them to a wildlife expert with the provincial government, who confirmed the animal was a coyote.
Much of Bay Roberts is located on a narrow peninsula that juts out into Conception Bay, and the coyote was at the extreme end of this point of land, known locally as Mad Rock. In order for the coyote to return to the wilderness, it would have had to backtrack through the town.
Based on this, and concerns that the animal posed a safety threat to people and their pets, town officials decided to call in the hunter. After about four hours of planning and ensuring the area was safe, the hunter dispatched the animal at about 3 p. m., Bowering explained. The area was a considerable distance from the nearest dwellings, he added.
Bowering and Mayor Philip Wood say it was the first time in their memories a coyote had been spotted in the town.
“We felt it posed a threat,” said Wood “The bottom line is he was deep into the town, and in order to get out, it might have had some severe consequences for either pets or people.”
Wood said town officials were also motivated by a deadly attack by coyotes in October 2009, which resulted in the death of a 19-year-old female who was hiking in the Skyline Trail of the Cape Breton Highlands National Park in Nova Scotia.
Wood added the Shoreline Heritage Walk is a popular destination for walkers of all ages, many of whom bring their pets.
“These were all factors in deciding what to do,” he explained.
There have been no more reported sightings in the town, Bowering noted.
Coyotes are relative newscomers to the island portion of the province. Their presence was first confirmed in the mid-1980s, and there’s now a coyote management plan in place to address predation on livestock and big game, and provide recreational and economic benefits to trappers and hunters.
Anyone sighting a coyote can contact the Town of Bay Roberts or the provincial wildlife division at 637-2025.
An out- of-province tourist spotted this coyote in the Mad Rock area of Bay Roberts on Sept. 26. The animal was later dispatched by a licenced hunter.