Any wild animal is best enjoyed from a distance, and left to do their thing. This is especially important to remember for coyotes.
Coyotes are small, dog-like animals that look like a cross between a fox and a German Shepherd. They can be found all over our city, as they adapt well to both park environments and urban areas.
Having healthy urban wildlife, including coyotes, is something Calgary is very lucky to have.
Benefits of urban coyotes
Coyotes are living and thriving in Calgary - and that’s a good thing.
Urban coyotes help control populations of other wildlife (especially rodents), from becoming problematic.
Coyotes are the top predator in Calgary’s wildlife. A good population of coyotes shows that our city has a variety of healthy wildlife in stable numbers; this biodiversity is important and extremely valuable to Calgary.
Calgary has many residents - both people and animals. Living together is what makes our city a great place.
Tips for good coyote-human relations:
- Enjoy all wildlife from a distance. Let them do their thing.
- Never feed coyotes or leave pet food (including bird seed) outside.
- Be mindful of where your children are- and don’t leave them unattended.
- Carry a loud whistle or other noise-making device with you in areas that have coyotes.
- Throw all garbage in park containers and pick up after your pet.
- Do NOT run or turn away.
- Scare the coyote by shouting and waving your arms overhead.
- Bang sticks or clang pots together at the animal.
- Maintain eye contact and back away slowly.
- Keeping pets away from coyotes keeps pet safe.
- In on-leash parks, always leash your dogs.
- In off-leash areas, if coyotes are present or in the area, keep your dogs leashed. Shorter leashes keep dogs safer.
- Keep your cats indoors- it keeps cats safe from coyotes and songbirds safe from cats.
- Pick up dog poop - it attracts coyotes.
- Close/block areas under porches, decks or steps.
- Clean up compost, garbage and other food sources.
- Pick up fallen fruit and seed around bird feeders.
- Don't store food outside.
- At night, keep pets secured in your yard, or inside your home.
- Don’t leave pets unattended in your yard.
- Average weight is 9 – 14 kg, or 19 – 30 lbs
- Fur is brown with reddish tinges
- Has a bushy tail with distinctive black tip
- Yellow eyes help them see well in low light
- Ears are large for their body
- Coyotes have a distinctive quick gait, and can run up to 64 km/h for short distances
Coyotes and The City
Citizen safety is the number one priority. However, it’s important to note that coyotes are a vital part of Calgary’s ecosystem and provide many benefits.
The City supports and encourages peaceful co-existence with coyotes through public education and, if needed, proactive management. We have a Coyote Conflict Response Guide based on scientific research and best management practices.
If we encounter a problem animal, The City practices “hazing” techniques that teach the coyote to associate humans with loud noises and other unpleasant experiences; hazing is non-lethal and does not harm the coyote. We want to change their behavior and reduce potential conflicts by keeping both citizens and our wildlife safe. Lethal removal is an absolute last resort.
Read The City of Calgary's Coyote Conflict Response Guide.
Reporting coyote sightings or encounters
- In an emergency situation where there is immediate danger, call 9-1-1.
- For non-emergency situations and to report coyote sightings, please call 311 (or 403-268-2489 outside city limits), or report online.
Take it to go: Coyote awareness flyer.