Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Missouri: Unwelcome visitor: Bentleys briefly host invading coyote

Marshall, Missouri

From the The Marshall Democrat-News of January 22, 2008
Unwelcome visitor: Bentleys briefly host invading coyote

Authorities on the subject say that coyotes avoid human contact.

On their Web site, Missouri Department of Conservation says, "Typically shy, elusive animals, coyotes don't normally pose a threat to humans. Most people who live in areas of high coyote populations rarely see one."

Apparently, the coyote that invaded the home of Lloyd and Rosamae Bentley in late December doesn't own a computer.

The Bentleys were enjoying a quiet evening at home when Lloyd heard a thump on the wall outside the front window. Then his two dogs started barking. One of the dogs is part husky, the other a beagle. Bentley said the beagle is "a little dog, but he barks big."

When Bentley opened the front door, he spotted a coyote lurking between the bushes and the window. Accompanied by a chorus of barking and yelping from the two dogs, he went back into the house to get a broom, hoping to shoo the coyote away.

By the time he got back outside, the dogs had cornered the animal on the porch. Realizing the broom wouldn't be of much use, Bentley went back inside the house to get his shotgun.

When he opened the door again, the by-now panicked coyote quickly slipped past him into the living room, and, spotting the fireplace, tried to take cover inside it. Unfortunately for the coyote, the fireplace is screened.

After that, the situation rapidly deteriorated into chaos.

As his wife blocked the coyote's access to the rest of the house, Bentley went after it, opening the living room door in the vain hope the intruder would run for safety, but that didn't work, either. "He wouldn't have none of that," Bentley said.

With the coyote now cowering behind a chair in the living room, Bentley grabbed a fireplace poker and took a mighty whack at the animal, but, he said, "He didn't go down." Wielding a larger poker, Bentley finally connected, but still, "He wouldn't go down." It took another blow or two, resulting in a bent poker, to finally stun the coyote to the point where Bentley could handle it.

He was eventually able to drag the mangy-looking animal outside, where he shot it.


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