Nicole Van De Wolfshaar heard the din of crows in her garden on Saturday morning. But looking at the pool, she saw something unusual.
“I was pretty sure I was going to have to add ‘drowned coyote’ to my to-do list,” she wrote on her neighborhood Facebook page, sharing footage of a coyote swimming in the swimming pool. “He finally came out safe and sound.”
Van De Wolfshaar tells Newstalk 580 CFRA CFRA live with Andrew Pinsent she was getting water to make coffee on her barbecue – her electricity was still out from the storm a week before – when she heard the sound of local birds.
“When there’s a predator in the neighborhood, the crows start making quite a racket to alert other animals,” she said. “We often see foxes in our back yard, so I went out to see the fox and couldn’t see him anywhere. Then I approached the pool and that’s where I saw the coyote.
She isn’t sure if the coyote fell or just wanted to go swimming, but she said she was worried it was trapped.
“Maybe it was the wrong reaction but I felt worried. I wanted to help him. I searched the yard to find something I could use to get him out of the pool because he didn’t have really didn’t look like he was going to make it,” she said. “He looked exhausted. I don’t know how long he was in the pool before I spotted him.
Nicole Van De Wolfshaar tells Newstalk 580 CFRA that a coyote found swimming in her backyard pool in Ottawa appeared to be trapped, but was finally able to get out and leave on Saturday morning. May 28, 2022. (Nicole Van De Wolfshaar/Facebook)
Van De Wolfshaar said she heard neighbors say coyotes were sometimes seen in her area of Glabar Park.
The coyote finally managed to get out of the pool. Van De Wolfshaar also regained his power on Saturday night.
Between last Saturday’s storm, the week-long power outage and a visit from a coyote, Van De Wolfshaar said it was “the craziest week I’ve had since moving here. “.
Coyote sightings are not uncommon in Ottawa. City staff say they receive about 300 calls a year about them, mostly for the same animal or for coyotes that have been killed by vehicles. Attacks have also been reported in recent years.
While this coyote seemed only interested in bathing, the Ottawa Police and Ottawa By-law have the following advice if you encounter aggressive wildlife:
- Never approach or touch the animal
- Do not turn your back on the animal and do not run away from it
- Step back while remaining calm
- Stand up straight, wave your hands and make a lot of noise
- Carry a flashlight when walking at night