Coyotes take toll on hapless Florida cats

May 30, 2008 at 4:54 PM

EUSTIS, Fla., May 30 (UPI) -- Residents of a Florida neighborhood say they are pretty certain coyotes are behind a recent rash of disappearing house cats.

Folks in the Lake County neighborhood told the Orlando Sentinel Friday they have found fur and bones left behind in their yards and, in one instance, saw a coyote running off with a cat in its jaws.

"These cats are disappearing right now," Eustis-area resident Marie Baker told the newspaper. "They're probably looking for food, and now they're just getting people's cats."

One woman told the Sentinel she had lost five felines in the past 18 months.

Wildlife experts warned residents to keep their cats and dogs inside during the dawn and dusk periods when coyotes are most likely to be on the prowl.

The also advised people out walking their pets to pick them up and head in the opposite direction of they spot a coyote on the street.

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