Coyote Sightings

From time to time, City of East Lansing officials hear reports of coyote sightings in East Lansing neighborhoods. Community members are encouraged to read the information below from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) to learn more about coyotes and ways to minimize the potential for conflicts with coyotes. 

Here is some information about coyotes from the MDNR:

  • Coyotes are generally greyish-brown with white and orange fur; the throat and belly are normally creamy white in color. Fur is very dense and thick, especially in winter, causing them to appear larger than they actually are. Coyote’s ears are pointed and stand erect. When running, coyotes hold their tail below the level of their back.
  • Coyotes typically weight 25-45 pounds and are about the size of a medium-sized German Shepard.
  • Coyotes are active day and night; however, they are most active at sunset and sunrise and they do most of their eating at night.
  • Mating season is from mid-January to March and coyote sightings may increase during daylight hours when they are trying to find a mate.
  • Urban coyotes have a home range of 2-5 square miles, while their rural counterparts have a larger home range of 8-12 square miles.

Here are some tips from the MDNR to minimize conflicts with coyotes:

  • Never approach or touch a coyote
  • Never intentionally feed a coyote
  • Be SMART around coyotes:
    Safe to enjoy from a distance
    Make noise if they are too close
    Accompany small pets outside
    Remove bird feeders – these attract small birds and mammals, which are part of a coyote’s natural diet
    Take in the trash, pet foods and other possible attractants
  • Coyotes very rarely attack humans and are naturally afraid of humans. It is in the best interest of both coyotes and humans if coyotes retain their instinctive fear of people.

For more information: (see page 2)