I know not everyone is comfortable with predators around. For some folks, the thought of something wild wandering around with sharp teeth and the brains to use them to good effect is an affront to their worldview. I get that- one day I’ll recount the story of how a black bear and a mule deer buck scared the living crap out of me in Gardiner, MT early one dark morning. Anyway, this snarl is about a friend of a friend living in the lovely, green-leaning & accepting city of Boulder. This person is highly educated, a professional and a child of the 60’s. In other words, someone you’d expect to have at least a basic understanding of wildlife, or at the very least, a laissez-faire attitude. Well, the other day a coyote had the temerity to walk through this person’s yard. Nothing more, just walking, sniffing, you know, doing Trickster things. What did this educated liberal do? Did she admire the thick winter coat that allows coyotes to survive Colorado winters? Did her jaw drop at the opportunity to see a wild canine on her property? Did she say a quiet thank you? No, she called 911!! Seriously?!!? Again, said coyote was not throttling the neighbor’s puppy, was not foaming at the mouth, wasn’t acting aggressive at all. And yet, this person, safely tucked inside her home, felt the need to call for emergency help. Luckily for this coyote, the dispatcher notified the caller that they don’t do anything about coyotes walking in yards.
Now perhaps I’m being too harsh and snarky. Could be, but I think if someone living in Boulder, Colorado freaks the hell out over a coyote in her yard, what chance do predators have in our society as a whole? I know I really can’t paint with that broad a brush, but still, I just shake my head at the ignorance, fear and lack of understanding that is all too common when it comes to predatory wildlife.