By Gary Bogue
Tuesday, July 17th, 2007 at 8:33 am in coyotes.
Why does shooting always seem to be the first (and last) response by government agencies to wildlife encounters?
Bay City News Service (BCN) reports that “two city-dwelling coyotes were shot and killed late Sunday night, following a Saturday morning attack on two leashed, large Rhodesian ridgeback dogs in Golden Gate Park.”
NOTE: Rhodesian ridgebacks weigh 70-85 pounds (“The New Encyclopedia of the Dog”). Coyotes typically weigh 18-44 pounds (“Mammals of California”).
Basically, the coyotes bit one of the dogs, causing “minor injuries.”
Officials said this “marks the first encounter in San Francisco with aggressive coyotes in recent history.”
It will also be the last encounter of any kind that anyone will have with coyotes in San Francisco if the state Department of Fish and Game and the U.S. Department of Agriculture wildlife executioners have anything to say about it.
It would be a shame if this one negative encounter resulted in the deaths of all future coyote visitors to this beautiful Baghdad by the Bay.
Although the coyote “threat” in Golden Gate Park has calmed down since the executions (gee, I wonder why), BCN has a revealing quote from Rose Marie Dennis, director of public affairs for the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department:
“It is not a foregone conclusion either way that there aren’t going to be additional concerns of additional animals.”
Possible translation of quote from bureaucratese to English:
“We’re going to kill any additional coyotes with an additional BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! when we find them.”