Missouri coyote sightings are expected to grow over the next month, as one of Missouri's indigenous and most adaptable animals heads into mating season.

Yes, coyotes in love, or lust, and their adaptability to a variety of different living situations is why more Missourians might be able to catch a glimpse of them more so than usual.

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Dr. Doug Pernikoff, a St. Louis vet, tells Fox 2 Now, “The males are out looking for females and the females are out running away from the males." So the long and the short of it, with coyotes being more active, there's a better chance for people to spot them.

According to the Missouri Department of Conservation, coyotes are most abundant in grassland habitats in northern and western Missouri, however, because they're adaptable their numbers are increasing throughout the state. Fox 2 Now says it's not that unusual for those who live in suburban or urban areas to see a coyote either, due to their adaptability.

So do humans need to be afraid of coyotes? No, coyotes don't particularly want to mess with humans. However, if you have a dog or cat, you may want to keep them from being outside unsupervised, as coyotes can view dogs and cats as a threat, or worse yet, prey.

Usually coyotes eat small mammals, insects, carrion, and wild fruits, with rabbits and mice making up two-thirds of of the coyote diet. In Missouri, for the most part, their diet is either neutral or beneficial to our environment. The one exception is when part of that diet includes livestock or poultry, which may represent what the Missouri Department of Conservation characterizes as a potential loss to humans.

While seeing a coyote can be a cool thing, as is hearing them off in the distance. It's best to discourage coyotes from hanging around your home. Some of the ways to do this include feeding your pets inside. Removing bird feeders, which can attract mice and other small animals coyotes like to eat. As well as not letting coyotes get too comfortable near your home.

The Missouri Department of Conservation produced this short video on living with coyotes if any call your neighborhood home:

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