BAY VILLAGE, OH (WOIO) - Bill Votruba lives along the lake in Avon Lake and has known homeowners who have lost dogs to coyotes.
"Small animals, small dogs, small cats. Oh yeah, I've had a couple disappear," Votruba said.
That's why when a coyote showed up at our own Beth McLeod's back fence in Bay Village, she got worried.
"We realized, started talking to the neighbors and they are like, 'well there is three of them running around,' and we all have small dogs, and so that became an issue. How do we get rid of them? And, when do we see them?" Beth said.
She and her husband installed motion sensor cameras and couldn't believe their eyes when they saw what was recorded.
"At first it was funny, because the first couple of pictures were chipmunks, and the chipmunks were running along the fence, and we were like, oh, that's really cute, and then, the next picture was unbelievable, plain as day, looked fake, of a coyote in the middle of the day, just standing at our fence looking in," Beth described.
Wildlife expert and Bay Village native Amy LeMonds of the Lake Erie Nature & Science Center says it's pretty typical to see coyotes along the waterfront, where the food is plentiful.
"Should you see a coyote, possibly making some loud noises, having motion sensor lights in your back yard can help deter them away," LeMonds says.
She says killing the coyotes won't solve the problem. In fact, LeMonds says they are an essential part of our ecosystem. They kill rodents and deer.
Beth is worried not only about her dogs but small children.
"People come down here to take in the lake all the time, the two and three-year-olds that are trying to pick up sea glass. It's a terrible thought. Something needs to be done. It's serious."
An administrator at Bay Village City Hall says that the city has not received any complaints about the coyotes and that any concerns would be referred to the police department.
Cleveland Metroparks has compiled more information on coyotes in northeast Ohio. CLICK HERE to learn more.