NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Visitors to Central Park may be keeping an eye out for something wild, after the Parks Department confirmed that at least one coyote has been spending time there.

CBS2’s Tara Jakeway was on the lookout on Tuesday. There is no photographic evidence of the coyote, but that doesn’t seem to matter to some New Yorkers. The confirmation of a sighting is enough to stop some people in their tracks.

“It’s kind shocking to hear that the coyote would be here because it’s near the road and the dogs,” Skip Lievsay said.

“Coyotes in the park? Are they big? I know we’re in a park, but I’m a city boy. To me, it’s kind of weird,” added James Ravenell of Harlem.

“Wow, we have the real natural world right here in New York City. I didn’t know. That’s surprising,” said Marilyn Williams, who lives along Central Park West.

Lievsay said news of a coyote spotting spread fast in his building near West 80th Street, which overlooks the park. Many of his neighbors have already lined up a coyote run-in strategy.

“Grab the dog and just stay away,” Lievsay said.

File photo (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)

Many of them said they are concerned, primarily, about their puppies.

“We consider this whole stretch here to be the dog place. Because everyone brings their dogs here morning, noon and night,” Lievsay said.

MORE“I’m Devastated, She Was My Baby”: Dog Owner Speaks After Deadly Coyote Attack In New Jersey

Jakeway scoured the west side of the park in the CBS2 Mobile Weather Lab and spotted plenty of those dog walkers, bikers, and runners, all that share similar concerns about the wild animals.

Upper West Side resident Ethan Aiken runs with his friend in the park every morning. He said he knows coyotes have a leg up on him.

“Yeah, I think she can, but I’ll get left behind,” Aiken said when asked the prospects of him outrunning a coyote.

When asked what she would do if she saw a coyote, Arielle Friedman of New Rochelle said, “Run the other way.”

FLASHBACK: Coyote Caught After Romping Through Manhattan’s West Side

Coyotes typically prey on small rodents and squirrels. The Parks Department is asking that New Yorkers report a sighting if it is a clear threat to public safety. It said there have been a total of 62 coyote sightings reported citywide since 2016 and 36 reported since Dec. 15 in the borough of Manhattan alone.

The Parks Department said it cannot confirm how many were submitted from Central Park as people are not required to list an exact location, and it has no way of tracking numbers because multiple reports could be for the same coyote.

The agency said if you cross paths with wild animals in New York City, respect them the same way you would any other New Yorker, and give them plenty of space, which may be easier said than done during the busy holiday season.

Comments (17)
  1. Bad Penguin says:

    Waite until the dogs and cats start disappearing then something will be done. Dogs, cats and small children are happy meals for these animals.

  2. Guyver says:

    Let me know when you see Man-Bear-Pig.

  3. jimmy not that jimmy says:

    All these NYC “environmentalists” who wouldn’t know a wild environment if it shat on them. One coyote? They should be happy.

  4. maxx katt says:

    that is the least of NYC problems! A single coyote? Give me a break.

  5. Your photo has caught what appears to be a coywolf, also seen in Central Park. Coywolf is a cross between the coyote and an Eastern wolf. youtube has links on coywolf research.

  6. Justanaveragejoe says:

    The Coyote will find New Yorkers quite rude. They’ll get smart and leave.

  7. reason1984 says:

    The time to be concerned is when you spot a Mountain Lion.

  8. k kut says:

    Seriously? I run into coyotes all the time in my neighborhood… if you’re walking your small dog, just pick him up… you all will be fine.

  9. AC7880 says:

    They should worry more abut the human predator animals than a single coyote.

  10. Dr Red Pill says:

    You dumb ass city people are worried about a coyote! Please ! Your fellow human in NYC is by far a much bigger threat then a wild coyote that wants nothing to do with you! You city people are so damn dumb and helpless it’s not funny! Hope you don’t ever have a real threat to deal with!
    Merry Christmas you retards!

  11. David Williams says:

    Indeed. To all those NYC animal lovers and strident environmentalists who demand re-introduction of wolves onto western grazing lands, RESTORE wolves to Central Park, that you might experience what farmers and ranchers in the West now enjoy.

    1. Andrew says:

      We’ve been saying re-introduce the Timber Wolf to Central Park for years! While your at add a mating pair of Mountain Lions (had one at the back door a couple of weeks ago) and for fun a few Grizzlies, had a big Bruin in the neighborhood a little over a month ago. But don’t worry New Yorkers the bears hibernate.

  12. John Tess says:

    This is just insane. I live in an area where there are dozens of coyotes, they are ubiquitous. They will not attack a leased dog or a human being unless the coyote is rabid. They are amazing animals and Central Park should be welcoming wildlife. It’s not like the coyote is going to attack a leashed dog with a human being attached to the leash!

    1. TStetler says:

      I’m in Michigan; we have coyotes everywhere, plus bear, cougars, bobcats, over 2 million whitetail deer and all manner of other critters.

      Man Up!!

      1. jimmy not that jimmy says:

        I’m down near St. Joe near the big lake. We have a badger in the woods behind the house. Pretty cool.

        1. Andrew M says:

          Badgers?….Badgers?….We don’t need no stinking badgers!!

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