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Dallas residents can call hotline to report coyote sightings

Coyote Coyotes
Oliver Brooks
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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says coyotes are not a human safety risk. Coyote attacks on people are extremely rare and the animals are generally afraid of people.

Dallas Animal Services is setting up a hotline for residents to call if they spot a coyote. The announcement comes after a coyote attacked a toddler on his porch.

The hotline number, which is 469-676-9813, is intended to make it easier for residents to report sightings of coyotes in their neighborhood. Residents will be able to leave their contact information and provide details about a coyote’s behavior.

Animal Services employees will follow up with residents if needed and use the information to track coyotes that could pose a threat to residents.

Officials say they believe there are several coyotes in the area that have become overly socialized to humans. So far, three coyotes have been killed since the 2-year-old boy was attacked. Officials, however say they don't know if they'll ever be able to determine which coyote attacked the child. The boy reportedly is in stable condition.

Coyotes typically stay away from humans, but Animal Services employees say there are things residents can do to keep them away. That includes removing outdoor pet food and keeping trash bins secured and shut.

Got a tip? Email Stella M. Chávez at schavez@kera.org. You can follow Stella on Twitter @stellamchavez.

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Stella M. Chávez is KERA’s immigration/demographics reporter/blogger. Her journalism roots run deep: She spent a decade and a half in newspapers – including seven years at The Dallas Morning News, where she covered education and won the Livingston Award for National Reporting, which is given annually to the best journalists across the country under age 35.