It’s not unusual to see coyotes in this area, said Jodie Owen, public information director of the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission.
“They’re in all 100 counties in N.C. and they live in many towns,” she said.
Owen said increased urbanization and encroachment into coyote habitats is driving them into urban areas.
“The North Carolina population is booming and the more people who come into the state, the more houses that need to be built up, schools that need to be built, roads and other infrastructure like that to support a growing population,” she said.
Geriann Albers, Wildlife Resources Commission furbearer biologist, said a coyote’s adaptability is what allows the species to thrive in urban areas.
“Coyotes are really good at using small, green spaces in urban areas and they take advantage of the abundant sources of food, like unsecured garbage and larger populations of mice, rabbits, and squirrels that live in people’s yards,” she said.
Although the commission doesn’t keep any estimates on local or statewide populations of coyotes, they use sightings and other surveys to keep track of any trends indicating an increase in the coyote population, Albers said.
One of the coyote spotters is Board of Aldermen member Bethany Chaney.