I live in an area that in spite of being in a large city, is also surrounded by a nature preserve. I feel blessed to have such beauty around me and love seeing the plentiful deer, coyotes, bobcat, bunnies, squirrels and occasional mountain lion. The preserve is part of a natural corridor that stretches for many miles and connects to more remote parts of San Diego County, giving much needed resources to the wild animals who live here.
Recently, there has been a bit of an uproar amongst some of my neighbors about the coyotes becoming “more aggressive”. (coming close to houses, not running from humans or dogs, etc.) Some people want to have an agency come in who would relocate the coyotes. (something I am vehemently against). As I have reminded these folks, this area is home to not just humans, but the wildlife who were here long before the two-leggeds were! It is up to us to learn how to adjust, not them!
I was reminded of an experience I had a few years ago when I needed to communicate with a wild rat. Our next door neighbor had been feeding birds very close to the house and as a result, we both had rats living in the crawl spaces beneath our homes. So, I called a “Catch and Release” pest control fellow, who set a few traps in the crawl space. He assured me that when he captured a rat, he’d take them many miles away and release them. Sure enough, within a day or so, there was a rat in the cage. I crawled below, sat down next to her and decided to have a chat. “Hi!! Who are you!!” she chirped cheerfully. I explained that I lived in the house above and that this was NOT a good place for her to be. Using a ‘tough love’ approach I told her “We have cats……and if you and your friends persist in living here, when you have an entire nature preserve to live in, then I will have to send my cats down here.” I sent her images of what it might be like to be hunted and killed by a cat. (don’t even ask me if that was easy to do) Then I told her that she would soon be released back to the preserve where she was to tell all her rat buddies to avoid coming into human homes.
The next day when the very nice fellow showed up to take her away, I said “Oh no! You have to release her right here, in the preserve. I’ve talked with her and she needs to be the messenger for the other rats that live there!!” You can imagine the look on his face as he kind of backed away from me agreeing to my request, probably thinking that I was a nut.
It worked. After my rat chat, they were gone.
So recently, I’ve been doing a kind of ‘blast telepathic email’ to the coyotes who live around us, letting them know that they need to back off and be careful. I’ve reminded them that humans can be notoriously unpredictable and even dangerous. I’ve always had a good relationship with the coyotes who cruise the hill along the back side of our house where our cats Oscar and Felix and our dog Bella hang-out on the deck above. The coyotes know I won’t hurt them or remove them from their home, but they also know that our fur kids are not to be messed with.
It is my hope that through my work and my love for animals that I can help raise the consciousness of humans, helping them understand that we are all cohabitants of this glorious planet. When we work together with all life forms, we are blessed with a life which is guided by divine source.