Woman: dog had daytime 'run-in' with coyotes
Lincolnville — A woman living on Youngtown Road said her dog had a “run-in” with coyotes on her property around 8 a.m. Friday, Sept. 20.
Wendy McCusker described the incursion in a post Saturday, Sept. 21, to the Facebook group Lincolnville Maine News.
“I heard her bark turn from territorial to a shrill, scared bark, so I ran out and thought I would just hear her get torn to pieces,” McCusker said in her post.
In a telephone interview, she said she screamed to get the coyotes to go away, but they did not leave until she rang a large bell on her porch. Her dog, a border collie, returned home seemingly unharmed, but a visit to the vet showed that it had torn a ligament during the encounter.
McCusker said she has lost three cats that she believes were killed by coyotes, and now keeps her cats indoors at all times.
“We’re not going to ever allow cats to go out again,” she said.
She said she could not see either the coyotes or her dog during the encounter, but she could hear them just beyond the edge of her lawn.
“I felt powerless,” McCusker said.
She added she has previously seen a coyote with an animal she thought might be a cat in its mouth, and hears them often at night. The recent incident was the first time she had encountered them during the day, she said. She said she thinks a pack of coyotes lives in her neighborhood.
“I don’t know what they’re eating,” McCusker said, but they’re getting “much more brazen.”
McCusker said she didn’t know who to call, so she did not report the incident, except on Facebook.
Her friend, fellow Lincolnville resident Alex Uhll, said three or four coyotes had crossed Tanglewood Road in front of her 15-year-old son, Jack Uhll, when he was walking there a few weeks ago.
The boy used his cellphone to call his father, who came and picked him up in his car, Alex Uhll said. Her son was near home when he saw the coyotes, and a witness who was also walking on the road confirmed the sighting, she said.
“All our pets are inside pets,” said Alex Uhll.
Maine Game Warden Tim Place of the Sidney Regional Headquarters said there had been only one recent complaint about coyote activity to his office. It was from someone in Searsmont, who said their chickens had been attacked.
Place said when the Wardens get complaints about coyotes attacking pets or livestock they send trapping agents to catch them. He added an early fox and coyote trapping season starts Oct. 20 and ends Nov. 2.
“There is no closed season on coyotes,” with regard to shooting them, Place said.
Sightings of coyotes, or other wild animals, may be reported to the nearest Warden Service dispatch center at Gray, 800-228-0857; Augusta, 800-452-4664; Orono, 800-432-7381; or Houlton, 800-924-2261.
Sarah E. Reynolds is a reporter for the Camden Herald.
Sarah E. Reynolds has been a reporter and writer for more than 20 years, winning awards from the Maine Press Association and other professional organizations. She loves to read, hike and play word games.
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