Coyotes spotted in North Georgia

People might be noticing coyotes roaming around their property, maybe a little too close for comfort. Georgia's Game Management Division says they're getting calls regularly, people are asking, what's the problem?

"Well very quickly coyotes will become accustomed to people, and the biggest thing we can do to try and prevent that is not to feed them," said David Gregory, Wildlife Biologist, "Whether it's directly providing them food or indirectly allowing them to get into our trash cans."


Coyotes can be seen at any time of day -- and recently they've been spotted in North Georgia.

"Occasionally we'll hear them we do live here in the creek bank, and there's some woods and open fields behind us and we will hear them," said Judy Capehart, "But I've never seen one in our yard."


Judy Capehart owns a farm in Ringgold and she's got a few outdoor pets that the Gaming Management Division warns could attract a coyote.

"And the reality is that coyotes do like to eat cats and so that is a concern," Gregory said.


Capehart says if she ever saw one in her yard, she'd know what to do.

"First thing I'd so is pick up and go back into the house," Capehart said.

But there are some other options recommended by the Gaming Management Division.

"Coyotes in Georgia are not a protected species so if people choose, they can remove that animal by either trapping that animal or by shooting that animal," Gregory said.

Coyotes are not known to attack people but Gregory recommends doing whatever it takes to keep them away.   

"I would recommend if they do see one in their backyard, yell at it, scream at it, try to run it off, throw a rock at it, use an air horn, and I've even heard of people using a paintball gun to try and run them off," Gregory said.

Even thought the state of Georgia allows you to shoot or trap a coyote, make sure to check your city and county laws to do so, not all areas have the same firearm discharge laws and in some places it might not be legal.