Thursday, February 04, 2010

Coyote pix! [with small corrections in text]

Yesterday I received an e-mail from an amateur photographer named Veryl Witmer who often takes his camera into the park to photograph wildlife. He sent me six photos of the coyote currently in residence in Central Park -- he chanced upon it while walking in the park two days ago. Since he also told me that the Parks department is well aware of the animal's location, I am publishing his photos here without worrying about invading the coyote's privacy. *

all photos by Veryl Witmer- 2/2/10
* A few hours after posting this I received an eMail from Veryl gently informing me that my assumption that Veryl is a female name was incorrect. I therefore changed the pronouns in the text above from "she" and "her" to "he" and "his".

Below, a note received yesterday from regular Indianapolis correspondent Bill Trankle:

Great to hear that another coyote made it to the park, but I think the greatest part of this continuing saga is still unexplained. As you mused in your article, how the heck did the thing get to CP in the first place (your Cross-town Bus idea gave me a chuckle)? This is the second coyote to show up, unless the first was released somewhere and decided he wanted to return (while that sounded good at first, he was hounded [couldn't resist, sorry] so badly that I doubt he would have fond memories of his brief sojourn in CP), so does that mean there is some canine Underground Railroad at work there? Inquiring minds want to know, but we probably never will.

Hopefully they treat this one better than the last or like they did the wild turkey. Keep us posted!

PS from Marie
Actually, the latest visitor is the third coyote to be seen in recent years, not the second. The article I posted yesterday told about the first. Then there was Hal, in 2006. And now the youngster seen in the photos above.

Below, another letter received this morning, telling some of the negative aspects of having a coyote in a public park:

Dear Ms. Winn,
I read your book Red-Tails in Love several years ago right after visiting Central Park and seeing Pale Male for the first time. I live in Atlanta, a wooded neighborhood inside the city limits. I have hawks, deer, foxes, owls, racoons, snakes, you name coyotes. Believe me, you do not really want coyotes in Central Park. I thought your old article about the coyotes was funny but I must tell you, coyotes are skilled hunters and pose much more of a threat to pheasants and other wildlife than a dog that is well fed on Alpo! My own dog was mauled and nearly killed by a coyote in our backyard. They are opportunists and will eat anything: cats, dogs, birds, small animals, insects; you name it. They are extremely cunning and adaptive and once they arrive, you cannot get rid of them. My neighborhood association has hired trappers to no avail. The coyotes are too smart. I used to see rabbits all the time in my neighborhood but not since the coyotes established themselves a few years back. I love wildlife but coyotes are not meant to live in the city. They have been known to attack small children in other places where they seem to have lost their fear of humans.
I love your website!! Central Park is one of my favorite places in the world and I know it best from your book and website. I have only been to New York a few times but I love visiting there.