Residents of Westerly, Rhode Island say they are concerned about an apparent increase in coyote sightings and attacks on their pets during the last several months.
Resident Rob Saglio says he has to carry a bat when he takes his dog out at night, because he fears a possible coyote attack. WJAR-TV reports the Westerly Town Council passed an ordinance Monday night to issue large fines people who feed coyotes.
Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management spokesperson Michael Healey says a big issue with coyotes is people intentionally feeding them. Healey warns that feeding coyotes makes coyotes bolder and changes their movement patterns.
Saglio says he’s started a Facebook group to monitor local coyote sightings.