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Coyotes return to a west Little Rock neighborhood | News

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Coyotes return to a west Little Rock neighborhood

LITTLE ROCK, Ark.(KTHV) - A coyote warning has been sent out to residents of one west Little Rock neighborhood. Wildlife experts say the recent cold snap has coyotes ranging farther into the suburbs for food.

Residents of the Villages of Wellington said they received a letter warning them of the coyotes return.

Alan Atkins, who lives in the area said he's not surprised by the warning.

"Two weeks ago around midnight." That's when Atkins said he heard howling and yipping outside his west Little Rock home.

"I listened to them for just a minute or so, amazed that they were that close and it woke my wife up and she was kind of startled, scared by it."

Atkins said it's not just one coyote, but a pack them that he hears late at night.

"I never saw them, but I knew they were really, really close by, by the sound and the fact that they quit howling when I flipped the light on. They were right there."

Tracy Roark, manager of Animal Services for the city of Little Rock said the increased activity of coyotes in urban areas has to do with the weather.

"They're coming out now because with all the ice and everything they're food source is drying up and they're looking for something to eat."

While out riding his bike Thursday, Atkins was on alert knowing the animals have been seen and heard in the area.

Atkins believes coyotes may be the reason his cat of 10 years is now missing.

"Lollipop walked out of the garage, he was an in and outside cat and walked out of the garage one day, kind of looked over his shoulder at me and I never saw him again. I suspected it was coyotes that got him."

Roark said residents should just be aware that the coyotes will be frequent visitors.

"The thing is about them, we've tried to trap them, we can't catch them. We can remove them, there's going to be 20 more take their place. They're going to be here."

Wildlife experts said pet owners should keep an eye on their smaller animals when they are outside, and don't leave food out for neighborhood pets.