Human-coyote interactions are an increasing challenge for North American wildlife managers. My objectives were to: 1) provide data on the types and general spatial distribution of human-coyote interactions in metropolitan Atlanta; 2) identify landscapes associated with human-coyote interactions; and 3) investigate the validity of claims of coyote-pet attacks and the potential effects of assuming a coyote attacked a pet. Human-coyote interactions were positively correlated with open space landscapes. A change in scale led to differences in both how correlated a variable was with interactions and relationships among variables. Sixty-four percent of individuals who reported that a coyote attacked their pet did not actually witness it. I provide evidence that such assumptions led to more negative views towards coyotes, lethal removal of coyotes, and entered news media. I recommend managers conduct investigations to verify attacks to avoid unwarranted negative feelings towards coyotes, unnecessary management actions and inappropriate broadcast of risk messages.
|Publisher||University of Tennessee at Chattanooga|
|Department||Dept. of Biological and Environmental Sciences|
|Degree||Master of Science: Environmental Science|
|University||The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga|
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