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Kelowna  

Coyotes nabbing cats, fowl

A Kelowna neighbourhood is struggling with what seems to be a growing epidemic of coyotes.

Comments about coyotes in local Facebook groups in the North Glenmore area have spiked. April Balducci of Balducci Farm said she has lived in the area for three years, and has never seen this number of coyotes. 

"They have gotten so bad. They are coming during the day," Balducci said, explaining her egg-laying hens have been going missing due to the predators. 

"I know that I've lost three but it could be more, because [the coyotes] were just hopping over the fence and grabbing them and hopping back over, then gone."

She said neighbours have reported incidents of small dogs snatched and cats being stolen from inside cat flaps. Her own feline population is down by 50 per cent after coyotes killed two of her farm cats.

"At night, they wake me up, the howling is just incredible," Balducci explained. "There's something about this year, I don't know what it is, if the population has peaked, but they are out during the day. I can see them in people's backyards across the street [...] I wanted to warn my neighbours."

According to local Facebook groups, coyotes have been preying on North Glenmore pets. Witnesses report they have become bold and are preying on small animals, sometimes appearing in numbers.

Balducci hesitated to say a cull was the right option, instead hoping that nature would take its course if locals would stop leaving food and garbage out that will attract the coyotes. She said the change in the animals' behaviour has been startling. 

"Instead of just being a regular coyote, 'You leave me alone I'll leave you alone,'" she said. "They're just eating everything."



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