Coyotes attack family pets in Brevard neighborhood

- Coyotes are moving into one Brevard County neighborhood, and family pets are running for their lives. Now, residents are taking matters into their own hands, to get rid of the coyotes.

"I just don't want to run into them," said Gillian Dionne. "It's a scary feeling."

A home surveillance camera shows Dionne's pet cat, Geo, lying on a chair, when a a hungry coyote walks up to the front porch. But the cat darts away, with the coyote right on his tail.  She said her 10-year-old cat survived by scrambling up a nearby tree, but she said the coyote did kill and eat her other cat, Mia.  What remained, she buried in her backyard.

"It's awful. You find basically there's not much left to find on the neighbor's yard.

Wildlife trapper James Dean said he met with more than 20 angry residents in Indialantic.  He said some of them want to privately hire him to stop the ongoing attacks on feral and pet cats, by trapping the wild coyotes on their own property.

"They are fed up. Their cats and their dogs are missing," he said. 

"If they want to hire a trapper to trap the coyote on their property that's their right," said Indian Harbour Beach City Manager Mark Ryan.

Ryan said his city trapped several coyotes over the last two years after cat attacks, but he added hat it's impossible to remove them all. Plus, he said, some of his residents support the coyotes.

"There are those in the community that want the coyote protected so it's a balancing act that we have to live with."

Florida Fish and Wildlife urges residents to keep pets indoors and encourages people to accept the presence of coyotes in Florida, but residents here say the coyotes are coming over their property fence where they want to allow their pets to be outdoors.

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