Riverside implements coyote policy

Brochure, other info available to residents

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By Bob Uphues


With coyote sightings in Riverside promising to eclipse the high water mark of 20 recorded in 2010, the village last week unveiled its new policy regarding the animals, outlining how the village plans to track their whereabouts and what residents can do to help.

Village Manager Peter Scalera and Police Chief Thomas Weitzel have been working on crafting the policy after a resident in early January reported four coyotes charging his dogs in a Riverside backyard.

Riverside police will now actively track coyote sightings, recording not only where they were seen but the behavior they exhibited and whether there might have been factors contributing to their presence, such as food, trash, small pets or rodents.

In addition, the village has created a brochure, which is available on the Riverside website (www.riverside.il.us or directly by clicking here), at the police department and at the village offices in the Riverside Township Hall. Other policy documents are also available on the website by clicking on the "for residents" link on the homepage and then choosing "coyote information" from the drop-down menu.

The brochure outlines what residents can do to discourage the presence of coyotes. In particular, residents are encouraged to "haze" coyotes whenever they confront them — by clapping hands, shouting, waving arms or throwing small objects at them.

"They are more fearful of humans than people think," said Scalera, during a short presentation of the policy to village trustees Monday night.

Residents are also asked to call Riverside police anytime there is an encounter, so police can track the incident.

Weitzel on Monday night said that his department in 2013 already has received 12 calls reporting coyote sightings, including everything from a coyote killing a rabbit in someone's backyard to packs of the animals walking in the vicinity of the river near Forest Avenue.

"If you call, we send an officer," said Weitzel.

Email: buphues@wjinc.com Twitter: @RBLandmark

Reader Comments

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Debbie Scott Maxwell from Riverside  

Posted: June 20th, 2013 4:14 PM

This is an emendation of my comment from yesterday. I spoke with Commander Legg of the Riverside Police Department this morning, who stated an officer was sent out last night to look for the coyote after our call.

Debbie Scott Maxwell from Riverside  

Posted: June 20th, 2013 12:04 AM

Per the story above, '"If you call, we send an officer," said Weitzel.' I called once last month and I called tonight. No officer came either time.

No Bib For You!  

Posted: February 22nd, 2013 7:10 AM

"Do we need to call the police hotline if I see one at the zoo ?" That's a good question 'Light Shiner on ME'. I'm prepared for any coyote that may hop the fence at the zoo. In fact I'm so well prepared that I even have a cache of small scale plastic bricks that I keep handy just in case I spy a coyote from the zoo that has ambled out of the 'Mold-A-RamaŽ'. They aren't as threatening as their cousins with the big paws who roam our streets, but these 'moldy' ones have a huge carbon footprint!

Shine the light on ME from Riverside  

Posted: February 21st, 2013 7:36 PM

Coyotes are our friends. They will pee on all those flowers that don't fit in with our Olmsted society. One thing that confuses me about the official policy - Do we need to call the police hotline if I see one at the zoo ?

Fraternal Pecking Order  

Posted: February 21st, 2013 3:25 PM

And the Lions? What do we do with them? I know! I know! We can call the Shriners! They'll ride in and putt putt those Lions back in their den!

No Bib For You!  

Posted: February 21st, 2013 3:20 PM

Frankrich Law Olmwright...would you please volunteer to be a write-in candidate for the District 96 Board? I like how you solve problems.

Frankrich Law Olmwright from Riverside  

Posted: February 21st, 2013 3:08 PM

We need to borrow a few of the Brookfield Zoo wolves to take out the Coyotes. And when the wolves become a problem, we bring in some Lions to take out the wolves. Problem solved.

No Bib For You!  

Posted: February 21st, 2013 2:29 PM

"Again, I say to you, I hope you don't come back as a coyote in your next life.......karma....." If I were to come back as a coyote I'd have enough sense to know that a brick or even a brickbat that was hurled toward my rib cage is not an invite to the party.

To: No Bib  

Posted: February 21st, 2013 2:00 PM

Again, I say to you, I hope you don't come back as a coyote in your next life.......karma.....


Posted: February 21st, 2013 12:42 PM

only in riverside

No Bib For You!  

Posted: February 21st, 2013 11:21 AM

"...we'd hate to lose their business." I'll bet you folks have plenty of 'ACMEŽ' Coyote First Aid & Repair Kits available for sale. Have you thought of offering 'ACMEŽ' Brickbats for sale? They're more manageable than a full sized brick and are apt to find their target, the rib cage, more often. Think about it...more rib cages being effectively hit with your 'ACMEŽ' Brickbats means soaring sales for your 'ACMEŽ' Coyote First Aid & Repair Kits. Beep! Beep! That's a real "wince-wince" situation.

Bernard Acme from Southwest United States  

Posted: February 21st, 2013 7:43 AM

I would not recommend injuring coyotes, as they are a large contingent of the Acme customer base, and we'd hate to lose their business. Just my opinion.

linda from Sacramento  

Posted: February 20th, 2013 2:52 PM

To: Dr. Doolittle. I'm not sure if you were being facetious, but by feeding the coyotes you are handing them a death sentence. By acclimating them to humans, you are habituating them to expect food from us - thus losing their fear. This has proven to be deadly for not only the coyotes, but humans that come in contact with these habituated coyotes.

Dr. Doolittle  

Posted: February 20th, 2013 12:29 PM

I'm all for the return of real wildlife here in the burbs. I've been feeding the coyotes for years now, and I'm quite pleased with their progress. If they manage to snag someones pet that has been carelessly left outside unattended, well that's just tough luck. I just wish there were wolves and bears to help round out the menagerie!

Riverside Dude from Riverside  

Posted: February 20th, 2013 11:38 AM

No Bib For You has the right idea. They need to fear humans. Throw bricks at them, shoot them with slingshots, yell at them, whatever it takes. Otherwise they just get more comfortable coming in to our yards and killing our pets.

To: No Bib  

Posted: February 20th, 2013 8:48 AM

I hope you don't come back as a coyote in your next life.

No Bib For You!  

Posted: February 20th, 2013 8:26 AM

To the few who disagree with my method of altering coyotes' behavior I want to thank you. The brickbats you have tossed at me are perfect for hurling at the coyotes! Cooperation...it works!

To: What's the matter with you?  

Posted: February 20th, 2013 8:14 AM

You haven't been following "No Bib"....he/she has been saying this over and over but has mentioned bricks in the past. I wouldn't call a brick a "small" object. The intent is to scare them away, not harm them.

Concerned N.R. resident from North Riverside  

Posted: February 20th, 2013 12:13 AM

What is North Riverside doing about the coyotes? They should follow Riverside's example (and not just say watch your pets!!!)

What's the matter with you?  

Posted: February 19th, 2013 11:30 PM

The brochure says to throw small objects at the coyotes. Follow directions!

To: No Bib  

Posted: February 19th, 2013 11:09 PM

Please stop with the throwing things at coyotes....enough is enough already.

No Bib For You!  

Posted: February 19th, 2013 10:12 PM

"...throwing small objects at them." 8" ?- 4" ?- 2.25"...aim for the ribs!

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