As Hudson Valley and Connecticut residents, it is expected that we will have an encounter with wildlife and some point in our life.

While most of us know how to handle ourselves in those situations, others don't. We also know that wildlife can be unpredictable and can attack at any time. Just ask the six people that were violently attacked by a rabid coyote in the lower Hudson Valley.

With the weather changing, and winter changing into spring, we're likely to be out and have a greater chance spotting coyotes. The Department of Environmental Conservation has issued guidelines to avoid conflicts with coyotes this season.

There are your obvious steps, like not feeding coyotes when you see them, and making your trash cans inaccessible to coyotes and other animals. And if, for some reason, you come in close contact with a coyote, the DEC suggests you "be aggressive in your behavior — stand tall and hold arms out to look large. If a coyote lingers for too long, then make loud noises, wave your arms, and throw sticks and stones."

Of course, if you see a coyote exhibiting what the DEC calls "bold behavior," make sure to "Contact your local police department and DEC regional office for assistance." Bold behavior is described as coyotes having "little or no fear of people".

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