Why Was There A Dead Coyote On 84 in Newtown? Mating Season
It was an interesting drive into work this morning on I-84 West. Not only did I see an incredible display of road rage in Southbury, I also saw a dead coyote on the side of the highway in Newtown.
Did you see it too? It was right after Exit 10 in Newtown/Sandy Hook on the left shoulder. It was a big one, I'd estimate it to be at least 60-80 pounds or so. I've seen hundreds of poor animals splattered across 84 in my time, but this was the first Coyote road kill that I've ever seen.
The coyote population has increased in recent years in Connecticut, there were a few isolated incidents of coyotes attacking family dogs in Southbury, sightings in Danbury, and a coyote attack happened in Cheshire in the past two weeks.
Why the ramp up in coyote activity? It's coyote mating season in Connecticut from January to March. Coyotes are monogamous, male and female coyotes typically stay together for several years, according to the CT DEEP. Male and female coyotes are only fertile for a short time of the year, and the poor coyote that lost it's life on 84 this morning was most likely searching the area for it's/a mate.
Coyotes are fast, they can normally run 25-30 MPH, but can reach 35-40 MPH bursts of speed at times. Unfortunately, sometimes they can't avoid a 65 MPH vehicle. I've seen many social media posts from people that hear them howling at night in our area, even if a coyote is near your home, they will rarely threaten your safety. That changes if you have a loose dog or cat under 25 pounds, as the coyote attacks in Southbury last July proved.