Letter: Coyotes could kill LI pests

The state Department of Environmental Conservation announced the The state Department of Environmental Conservation announced the first officially confirmed Long Island coyote sighting in Bridgehampton, after farmer Richard Wesnofske, 50, said he saw the creature in his potato field in neighboring Water Mill. (June 24, 2013) Photo Credit: Rick Wesnofske

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Regarding "First coyote sighting on LI" [News, July 2], it has been nearly 400 years since wolves howled on Long Island shores. Now, it appears that a wolflike animal is returning.

The appearance of a coyote on the South Fork, while for some problematic, should be hailed with appreciation and excitement. It is a testament to nature's resilience and our desire to preserve at least a portion of our open spaces.

The coyote is the right fit ecologically for Long Island and will benefit us by possibly lowering the populations of nesting geese, deer and raccoons. There is also the potential for coyotes, along with foxes and hawks, to lower the risks of Lyme disease by controlling abundant rodent populations.

The sensationalist headlines about coyotes are unfair. Conflicts, though real, are easy to avoid by avoiding habituation through deliberate feeding.

Frank Vincenti, Mineola

Editor's note: The writer is the director of the Wild Dog Foundation, an educational organization.

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