My kids and I were driving through the town of Richardson, Texas when my daughter spotted a strange looking dog or Coyote on the grounds of a church near the busy intersection of East Collins Boulevard and Jupiter Road.
We quickly pulled into the church’s parking lot, and were surprised to find a Richardson Animal Control officer in the process of parking his vehicle there also. Clearly, he had seen the same animal we had.
I asked him if the animal we spotted was a Coyote, and he confirmed that it was, adding that a severe case of Sarcoptic Mange is what accounted for the animal’s unusual appearance.
I then asked him if the Coyote was likely to be aggressive, and if it would be all right to try and get a picture or two. The animal control officer was sure that the Coyote would not be aggressive, and in fact expected the animal to flee before we could get very close.
We walked around the building together, and the Coyote quickly began showing signs of nervousness. The animal control officer was right, we were not going to be able to get very close.
From where we stood the sorry state of the Coyote’s coat was still very evident. Nearly all of the animal’s fur was missing, and the Sarcoptic Mange was obviously causing the Coyote a great deal of discomfort. In fact, the animal control officer commented that it was likely the Coyote’s poor health that was responsible for this rare midday observation.
Overall, though, the Coyote seemed relatively fit in spite of his condition, and the animal control officer felt that it would be unlikely that he could be captured without the use of traps or snares. He indicated that he would be back later with those items to make another attempt to secure the animal. I left soon afterwards as well.
Four days later I spotted the Coyote again in nearly the same location. As before, he was lying in the grass, not more that 30ft/9m from Jupiter Road, an extremely busy thoroughfare.
I pulled into a parking lot across the street from the church grounds, and took a number of pictures.
Later that afternoon, I stopped by the church again, and scouted the property a bit. A small wooded creek borders one side of the church grounds, and near there I discovered a live-trap/snare combo that had setup by Richardson Animal Control. Interestingly, the trap had been sprung, but was empty. The small can of cat food used for bait was empty as well. By all indications the Coyote is a resourceful fellow.
For the next 20 days I made a point of looking for the Coyote every time I passed by the church. But, I did not seen the Coyote again. His ultimate fate is unknown.