If you were hoping to take advantage of this weekend's sunny weather by heading to Stanley Park for some fresh air, the Vancouver Park Board has some good news for you: Trails in the Brockton Oval area are reopening Friday afternoon.
The trail network was closed to the public for much of last month, after numerous reports of coyotes chasing and nipping at joggers in Stanley Park.
The decision to reopen the trails was made in cooperation with the BC Conservation Officer Service, "as there have been no recent cases of coyotes nipping at people," the park board shared in a tweet Friday afternoon, Feb. 5.
About a dozen coyotes reportedly call the park home. Though the animals are naturally scared of humans, coyotes tend to become bold and aggressive when fed by people. In addition to the trail closures, that kind of behaviour prompted the City of Vancouver's Board of Parks and Recreation to launch a public education campaign aimed at informing the public about co-existing with coyotes.
Wildlife experts advise anyone who finds themselves confronted by a coyote to remain calm and avoid running, as coyotes instinctively chase anything (or anyone) that runs from them. Instead, experts recommend standing tall, holding your arms overhead and yelling at the animal.
Any coyote sightings should be reported to the City of Vancouver's 3-1-1 line. If you witness a coyote behaving aggressively, you can report the encounter to the BC Conservation Officer Service Report All Poachers and Polluters (RAPP) line at 1-877-952-7277 and 3-1-1.
In consultation with @_BCCOS, Rangers will reopen Brockton Oval trails in #StanleyPark this afternoon as there have been no recent cases of coyotes nipping at people. Do not feed wildlife. If confronted by a coyote, don’t run. Stand tall & yell. More info https://t.co/wE4vpEL9Fr pic.twitter.com/PUjZxFHt75— Vancouver Park Board (@ParkBoard) February 5, 2021