DARIEN, Conn. -- The number of sightings of fox in Darien appear to be on the rise, with a number of Daily Voice readers reporting wildlife in their yards .
Peter McGuinness of Darien has spotted a number of coyote and fox on his property in the residential area close to Tilley Pond Park.
Wednesday night, as McGuinness was walking his dog, "two came out toward him in an aggressive way," he wrote in an email.
"I gave a large roar and they ran off. I believe they have four baby kit (baby fox) as we have also seen them, as well," he said. "I have recently spotted a couple of adult and young coyote."
On Thursday morning, McGuinness spotted a dead cat on his street.
"I unfortunately found a dead cat -- in a condition that suggests it was obviously the victim of the fox or coyote," he said.
Residents will small pets should take steps to keep them safe from wild animals.
Darien police offered the following tips on how to stay safe, courtesy of the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Wildlife Division:
- Do not allow pets to run free. Keep cats indoors, particularly at night, and small dogs on a leash or under close supervision.
- Installation of a kennel or coyote-proof fencing is a long-term solution for protecting pets.
- Never feed coyotes. Do not place food out for any mammals. Clean up bird feeds, pet food and fallen fruit. Secure garbage and compost in animal-proof containers.
- Always walk dogs on a leash. If approached by a coyote while walking your dog, keep the dog under control and calmly leave the area. Do not run or turn your back.
- Attempt to frighten away coyotes by making loud noises, such as shouting or using an air horn, or acting aggressively, such as waving your arms, throwing sticks or spraying with a hose.
- Be aware of and report any coyotes exhibiting behavior indicative of rabies, such as staggering, seizures and extreme lethargy. Daytime activity is not uncommon and does not necessarily indicate rabies.
To report coyote sightings in Darien, contact the Darien Animal Control Officer at 203-662-5345 or DEP Wildlife Division at 860-424-3011. To report animals that are behaving abnormally or posing an immediate public threat, contact the Darien Police Department at 203-662-5300 or DEP Emergency Dispatch Office (24 hours) at 860-424-3333.
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