Coyotes establish permanent home territories in northwestern Long Island
The environmental group Seatuck says multiple pairs of coyotes have now established permanent homes on Long Island.
News 12 has been told their territories are in the northwestern part of Long Island.
Experts say the coyotes, which rely on rodents, birds, insects, and plants to survive, will have a positive impact on our ecological health.
Researchers say they spotted the first coyote on the Island back in 2009.
Wildlife Biologist Mike Bottini, with Seatuck, says there are multiple mating pairs living on Long Island.
He says over the past 100 years coyotes have migrated from the west and finally made it to Long Island.
Bottini says there are now at least nine coyotes on the Island. Six are in the Queens-western Nassau area close to Manhasset and Port Washington. There are three coyotes in Suffolk -- two on the south fork and one in Mattituck.
Bottini says the coyotes came to the Island from the Bronx, either by walking on aqueducts to Queens or by swimming. As the populations grew, the animals were pushed to explore new territory.
Experts say coyotes don't typically live in the woods, they live in urban areas near people. They've been known to make their homes near golf courses and fields.
Bottini says coyotes will go after small animals -- including pets.
He says coyotes are afraid of people, but if one gets too close, never feed it.
"Shout at it, you wave at it, you pick up a rock or a stick and you throw it at it. Keep them on guard when it comes to confronting humans," Bottini said.
Wildlife biologists say people can coexist with coyotes; we just need to take the proper precautions to avoid conflicts with them.