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Coyote terrorizes St. Pete neighborhood; killed 2 pets | News

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Coyote terrorizes St. Pete neighborhood; killed 2 pets

St. Petersburg, Florida - A coyote is running wild in the Jungle Terrace neighborhood of St. Petersburg, and it has already drawn blood.

"That's really concerning cause I don't want to walk around here. I just stay in the park because I don't even walk around the pond," said Holly Bender.

The pet owner was walking her boxer/pit-bull mix inside a gated dog walk area at Walter Fuller Park.

Bender is being more careful as word spread of a wild coyote that has already killed a dog and a cat in the neighborhood after a park maintenance worker first spotted it three weeks ago.

"The worker was out on his mower and all of a sudden this animal came charging at him on the mower," said neighborhood association president Dr. Ed Carlson.

Instead of wandering the streets at night, which is normal for such an animal, the coyote continues to venture close to residences during all hours of the day.

"If you walk your dog on a regular basis, it will stalk it. It will figure it out and he'll run out and take it off the leash." 

As the coyote roams, pets are not the only concern for people who live in this area.

Several baseball games at Walter Fuller Park were postponed after the animal was spotted on the field. 

"We called the police and got no response; we called the sheriff and got no response; we called animal control- got no response," said Carlson.

Frustrated over the lack of help from law enforcement, Carlson contacted the mayor office and after some prodding, a trapper was hired to hunt to track, tranquillize and remove the coyote.

But the trapper has been unable to capture the creature over the last two weeks, so Carlson wants everyone who lives in the area of about 2,200 homes to be aware, and call authorities if they spot him.

"If he doesn't get removed, then I want everybody to be heads up and calling the police every time they see him until we get action," said Carlson.

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