Two individuals arrested for allegedly feeding coyotes in Vancouver's Stanley Park

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      Shortly after the Vancouver Park Board reopened Stanley Park to full human access this week in the wake of coyote attacks, two individuals have been arrested for alleged feeding of coyotes.

      B.C.’s Conservation Officer Service (COS) stated on September 22 that officers arrested two Lower Mainland residents and seized their vehicle after alleged feeding of coyotes in Stanley Park.

      The feeding of wildlife is a violation of the B.C. Wildlife Act.

      “Direct feeding or placing attractants to lure wildlife, such as coyotes, is a dangerous activity and creates a public safety risk,” the COS stated. “Feeding wildlife lowers an animal’s natural fear of humans and often results in injury.

      The COS also released a video about the incident and how feeding wildlife can change their behaviour.

      “It is not normal for coyotes to approach or pursue people,” COS South Coast Region Insp. Drew Milne explained in the video. “Aggressive behavior towards people is almost always a result of the animal becoming too comfortable with humans due to it being fed, either directly or indirectly.”

      An investigation into the incident remains underway.

      Anyone with information related to this investigation, or any other suspected feeding of wildlife, is asked to call the COS Report All Poachers and Polluters (RAPP) hotline at 1-877-952-7277.

      On September 21, the Vancouver Park Board announced that restrictions on trails and overnight human access to Stanley Park were lifted after an extended period due to conflicts between humans and coyotes. At least 45 incidents involving coyotes nipping or biting people had been reported over the past year and 11 coyotes were killed in an attempt to address the issue.

      You can follow Craig Takeuchi on Twitter at @cinecraig or on Facebook.