AUSTIN (KXAN) — A south Austin family is repairing their fencing and chicken coop after a pair of coyotes snatched and killed nearly a half dozen domesticated chickens last week.
Jacinda Rodeghiero regularly turns her chickens loose around 7:00 a.m., but noticed something was wrong when the surviving hens rushed to the other side of the yard half an hour later.
It wasn’t until she viewed her outdoor surveillance video that she realized what happened.
“Two coyotes came up and over that fence and entered my yard and slaughtered my chickens,” Rodeghiero said. “I had a little tiny hen and one of the coyotes just jumped up and snatched her right out of the air and swallowed her whole.”
Rodeghiero’s dilemma isn’t uncommon in Austin.
In the most recent report from the City of Austin’s Animal Services, there were 34 total coyote complaints in the month of August. Five included attacks on cats. There was one instance when a coyote took a puppy from a backyard when the family wasn’t watching.
The City of Austin has tips for anyone who may come face-to-face with a wild coyote. Officials say it’s important to “haze” the animal. Hazing is a process which encourages coyotes to avoid contact with humans and pets.
Make eye contact with the coyote and begin making loud noises. You can bang things or blow a whistle; the goal is to make yourself seem larger than you are. You should continue these actions until the coyote leaves.
Remember: coyotes are not naturally aggressive towards people and are fearful of loud noises. Never feed a coyote.