Wildlife officials on alert after 3 people bitten by coyotes in north Phoenix

Dec 12, 2023, 8:00 AM

File photo of a coyote on a roadway. Three people were bitten by coyotes in Phoenix between Dec. 9 ...

Three people were bitten by coyotes in Phoenix between Dec. 9 and Dec. 11, 2023. (Pexels Photo)

(Pexels Photo)

PHOENIX – Three people were bitten by coyotes recently in separate incidents in the same area of north Phoenix, wildlife officials said.

Two people were bitten on Saturday, a 4-year-old who was walking with family members and a man who was jogging, the Arizona Game and Fish Department said Monday.

On Monday morning, a coyote bit a man on the heel south of Happy Valley Road near Interstate 17.

The victims all received medical treatment and rabies vaccines.

It’s not known if more than one animal was responsible for the bites, which occurred in and around the Norterra community.

How are wildlife officials responding to Phoenix coyote bites?

Game and Fish officers removed one coyote from the area on Sunday and are on the lookout for others.

They are monitoring the area bordered by I-17 on the west, 19th Avenue on the east, Pinnacle Peak Road on the south and Jomax Road on the north.

Notices alerting the public about the attacks have been posted in the area.

Anybody who sees a coyote in the vicinity is asked to call Arizona Game and Fish at 623-236-7201, or dial 911 in the event of an emergency.

What should you do if you see a coyote?

Coyotes are common throughout Arizona, although attacks are rare. They are known to frequent neighborhoods where they can find food, water or shelter and can lose their natural fear of humans with familiarity.

There have been 28 coyote attacks recorded in metro Phoenix over the last 26 years, according to wildlife officials.

The Arizona Game and Fish website lists the following ways of handling a coyote encounter:

  • Make loud noises, but don’t turn and run away; the coyote may view it as an opportunity to chase.
  • Keep eye contact.
  • Shout and bang pots and pans or rattle empty soda cans with pebbles in it.
  • Wave your hands or objects like sticks and brooms.
  • Throw small stones or cans.
  • Spray the coyote with a hose.
  • Use a commercial repellent, such as Mace, on bold animals that refuse to leave.
  • Move toward other people, a building or an area with activity.

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Wildlife officials on alert after 3 people bitten by coyotes in north Phoenix