Coyote sightings in Punta Gorda neighborhood

Reporter: Emma Heaton Writer: Rachel Murphy
Published: Updated:
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Coyotes have been a common yet disturbing occurrence in Punta Gorda, but do they really pose a threat?

Security cameras have caught coyotes hanging out in driveways. Meanwhile, a local Punta Gorda Facebook group has noted sightings too close for comfort.

Tracy is a pet sitter and dog walker in Punta Gorda. She said that she worries for her four-legged clients.

“A lot of people don’t have fenced-in yards,” she said. “I’m out walking dogs late at night with a flashlight and some pepper spray and hopes that I’m able to walk down the center of the street in a well-lit area, but that’s not always the case.”

Tracy’s condo association sent a letter to the gated community this week to address coyote sightings. They offered advice if you encounter coyotes from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (or FWC), saying to pick up your little dog and make big noises.

FWC also advises keeping pets on a short leash and using caution in areas where coyotes could den or nest. Just seeing a coyote is not necessarily a cause for concern, said FWC, and call if a coyote is acting strangely or aggressively.

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