Our Wild Neighbors
Many wild animals have adapted to live comfortably in an urban environment. It is not unusual to see raccoons, skunks, squirrels, fox, coyotes and other wildlife in residential areas. In most situations, people and wildlife can coexist. The key is to respect the wildness of wildlife. Most dangerous and potentially harmful encounters occur because people fail to leave animals alone. Intentional or inadvertent feeding is the major cause of most wildlife problems. An animal lives where it lives because it feels safe and comfortable. If you make the animal feel unsafe or uncomfortable, it will simply move.
Arapahoe County Animal Services does not remove or relocate wildlife from private property. For human and animal health and welfare reasons, the state restricts the relocation of most wildlife species. Animal Services does not trap wildlife or respond to calls simply because a wild animal has been seen in the area.
Guidelines to keep in mind when dealing with wildlife:
- Do not feed wildlife.
- Discourage others from feeding wildlife.
- Do not touch young wild animals. Don't assume that just because you don't see the parents, the young have been abandoned. An animal that appears orphaned will often have its mother nearby.
- Teach children not to feed, play with or pet wild animals.
- Secure trash containers to prevent wildlife access.
- Eliminate other food sources such as bird feeders, pet dishes or barbecue grills.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife website.