Canadian folk singer killed by coyotes, park official says...in NS

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    Oct 30, 2009 1:15 AM GMT
    A rising Canadian folk singer was killed by coyotes this week in a national park in Nova Scotia, a park spokesman said Thursday.

    Taylor Mitchell, 19, was at the beginning of the Skyline Trail in Cape Breton Highlands National Park on Tuesday afternoon when she was attacked, according to Chip Bird, the Parks Canada field unit superintendent for Cape Breton.

    Bird said hikers saw the coyotes attacking Mitchell and called 911. She was airlifted to a hospital in Halifax, where she died about 12 hours later, he said.

    http://www.cnn.com/2009/SHOWBIZ/Music/10/29/canada.singer.killed/index.html
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    Oct 30, 2009 2:49 AM GMT
    I hear this is really rare to have a human killed by coyotes. I know the ones I see here in socal are usually fairly small like a a medium sized dog.
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    Oct 30, 2009 2:55 AM GMT
    A tragic and untimely end. But it does raise the question of whether she was one of those Oh-let's-be-one-with-the-fuzzy-animals people like that misguided bear devotee who was eaten by grizzlies in Alaska.
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    Oct 30, 2009 4:34 AM GMT
    It's really bizarre. I grew up with them literally in my back yard and even had a few run ins with them in wheat circles. It's so far outside their normal behavior I thought it was a hoax until I saw about 20 different sources reporting the story online. Normally they turn tail the minute they see you unless you have your dog with you and they think they can take it. Sometimes one will even lure larger dogs away from their owners and then a bunch of them will gang up on it, but people are just not on the menu.
  • Anto

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    Oct 30, 2009 4:48 AM GMT
    Is she a really small person?
  • swimbikerun

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    Oct 30, 2009 4:55 AM GMT
    So weird!
    Not a fun way to go.
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    Oct 30, 2009 6:15 AM GMT
    that is really weird.
    We have them here all the time. I hear them at night, running in the fields, yapping away.
    i come across some on bike trails , random solitary hirsute lanky things doing their own thing and looking at me with complete disdain.

    But strange things can happen. Last year a friend of mine got run after by a fisher , of all things ! That is unheard of , and not something desirable, nasty little creatures.
    Good thing he was going downhill, on his bike, and knew better than to confront it.

    So i wonder indeed how it is she got attacked. A solitary coyote wouldn't but maybe in a pack. .. tragic, and interesting also.
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    Oct 30, 2009 6:33 AM GMT
    i think the saddest part is that she was such a proponent of harmony with nature, and an avid hiker. now some people will think this is a common occurrence, and may avoid cool parks, of which Canada has MANY.

    one thing's for sure, if you see a pack of anything (except maybe a six packicon_biggrin.gif), it's best to avoid it. i would like to say i hope she didn't suffer, but that's just facetious.


    btw, this was my first post ever. YEAAAAH! too bad it's marred with the nature of sad news.
  • drypin

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    Oct 30, 2009 6:53 AM GMT
    I was once mauled by a six-pack. You wouldn't have wanted to see me afterwards; it was tragic.
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    Oct 30, 2009 7:14 AM GMT
    xassantex saidthat is really weird.
    We have them here all the time. I hear them at night, running in the fields, yapping away.
    i come across some on bike trails , random solitary hirsute lanky things doing their own thing and looking at me with complete disdain.

    But strange things can happen. Last year a friend of mine got run after by a fisher , of all things ! That is unheard of , and not something desirable, nasty little creatures.
    Good thing he was going downhill, on his bike, and knew better than to confront it.

    So i wonder indeed how it is she got attacked. A solitary coyote wouldn't but maybe in a pack. .. tragic, and interesting also.


    The story says it was two. The authorities killed one and the other got away. If it was one, that might have actually made more sense. A sick or crazy animal might act on its own. Recorded wolf attacks in North America, at least in modern times, have almost always been campers attacked by a solitary animal. Applying that behavioral model to a coyote is still odd, but wouldn't that big of a stretch. Still, any way you look at it, it's a very sad bizarre story.
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    Oct 30, 2009 7:21 AM GMT
    jprichva saidI wonder if any Acme products were used.


    I'm betting there was an anvil, a giant slingshot and maybe rocket skates involved.
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    Oct 30, 2009 7:22 AM GMT
    . . . this is not a time for humor or attempts at humor . . . a very young woman has been killed by wild animals . . . oh yes, the comedic possibilites are endless . . .
  • Menergy_1

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    Oct 30, 2009 2:26 PM GMT
    GuerrillaSodomite saidIt's really bizarre. I grew up with them literally in my back yard and even had a few run ins with them in wheat circles. It's so far outside their normal behavior I thought it was a hoax until I saw about 20 different sources reporting the story online. Normally they turn tail the minute they see you unless you have your dog with you and they think they can take it. Sometimes one will even lure larger dogs away from their owners and then a bunch of them will gang up on it, but people are just not on the menu.


    ^^^ this.

    Coyotes here around Santa Fe, northern New Mexico, are numerous and on my property every night, howling and yipping/crying. Attacking and killing (end result) a human has never happened around here. People's dogs/cats are prey for sure...even German Shepherds have been the object of coyote teams' attempts to herd them away from their owners on walks in the open areas here. But as you say, they're mostly more avoiding human contact or confrontation.

    Sad event -- and I expect this will lead to extreme reactions by all those who want wildlife eradicated, whether it's grey wolves, coyotes, large cats, etc.
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    Oct 30, 2009 2:40 PM GMT
    AbFab1 said Coyotes here around Santa Fe, northern New Mexico, are numerous and on my property every night, howling and yipping/crying. Attacking and killing (end result) a human has never happened around here. People's dogs/cats are prey for sure.


    Our Santa Fe vacation condo has a gym where residents post notices. Last summer there was one of those "Lost Cat" notices next to a warning that a mountain lion had been spotted in the area. Guess what happened to the cat.

    The takeaway from this coyote incident is that wild creatures should be respected, not romanticized into touchy-feely cartoon characters.
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    Oct 30, 2009 2:42 PM GMT
    Maybe they didn't like her singing.
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    Oct 30, 2009 5:15 PM GMT
    In the Rockies, BC or Alberta a few years ago, a woman got killed by a mountain lion,
    2 years ago near Quebec City, another woman got killed by a bear while doing her morning jog in well frequented trails near the military base of Val Cartier.

    And here another young woman...

    so, if you think of a sex change and like to run , think twice. :p

    --

    there are no campaigns for eradication of wildlife here, at all. But they will post signs warning people.
    just like when i bike in Utah or CO, they warn you of rattlers who have a right to that environment as much as we do.
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    Oct 30, 2009 5:18 PM GMT
    GuerrillaSodomite said...

    The story says it was two. The authorities killed one and the other got away. If it was one, that might have actually made more sense. A sick or crazy animal might act on its own. Recorded wolf attacks in North America, at least in modern times, have almost always been campers attacked by a solitary animal. Applying that behavioral model to a coyote is still odd, but wouldn't that big of a stretch. Still, any way you look at it, it's a very sad bizarre story.


    true, a single coyote could have rabies and behave weirdly , or simply be mad. Mental illnesses exist in animals too.
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    Oct 30, 2009 5:32 PM GMT
    xassantex saidIn the Rockies, BC or Alberta a few years ago, a woman got killed by a mountain lion,
    2 years ago near Quebec City, another woman got killed by a bear while doing her morning jog in well frequented trails near the military base of Val Cartier.

    And here another young woman...

    so, if you think of a sex change and like to run , think twice. :p

    --

    there are no campaigns for eradication of wildlife here, at all. But they will post signs warning people.
    just like when i bike in Utah or CO, they warn you of rattlers who have a right to that environment as much as we do.


    When I lived in Seattle, we would have Mountain Lion attacks pretty regularly up on the Issaquah Plateau and the neighboring mountains. It was almost always a smaller female hiker or runner. Oddly, it never kept people away from the area or inspired a call for the eradication of the cats. In at least two cases that I remember, the surviving victims were the animals biggest advocates.
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    Oct 30, 2009 7:23 PM GMT
    Up until a few weeks ago I made no secret of my disdain for the uptight ladies who lunch and their letters to the editor of the local newspaper in which they screeched about coyotes stalking them and their little dogs when they walked through what remains of the forest in which their husbands built sub-divisions of McMansions. My dogs and I have encountered coyotes in the woods for years and not once did I fear for my safety or the dogs' - even though the smallest of my dog weighs only 11lbs. The coyotes never displayed any willingness to risk coming near a human.

    Then three weeks ago a client reported that a mother coyote carried off her 20lb silken terrier right in front of her eyes. At that point, I had to confess that something has definitely changed in our part of the woods.

    Seeing the story from Nova Scotia (where I spent every summer as a child and where my family still has property) horrified me. Until hearing of this case, I would have said it was inconceivable that a coyote - or even a small group of them - would attack, much less kill, a human.

    I still maintain that we have less of a coyote problem than a people problem - i.e. human/coyote and dog/coyote encounters would be much less likely were we not encroaching so heavily on the coyotes' natural territory. New rules in Massachusetts and New Hampshire mean that pest control companies can now remove or kill coyotes deemed to represent a nuisance (which can mean passing through someone's backyard). I opposed those rule changes, but my opposition is now wavering. My contention that the animals are not a serious menace is clearly shot full of holes. So my only remaining objection is that the plan probably won't work - unless there is an intentional push to all but destroy the local coyote population. Coyotes are territorial; so wiping out one coyote will likely lead to another moving in and possibly breeding more.

    It is, to say the least, eye-opening to see that, after tens of thousands of years of evolution and technological progress, humans can still become prey for a species other than our own.
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    Oct 30, 2009 9:16 PM GMT
    tough crowd.
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    Oct 30, 2009 9:19 PM GMT
    Coyotes are the only animal I am a fear of, I don't think I would be frightened if I seen a bear or even a wolf in the wild.. BUT COYOTES!?? It's always been like that with me.. I don't know why! lol
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    Oct 30, 2009 9:27 PM GMT
    ActiveAndFit saidI hear this is really rare to have a human killed by coyotes. I know the ones I see here in socal are usually fairly small like a a medium sized dog.


    yeah same here. In Arizona the coyotes are so small like little dogs. If i wanted to,I could catch one and keep it as a pet,but I'm not that stupid ahahahah...