County opts against issuing bounties for coyotes

by Quinton Sheppard - Posted on Feb 16, 2011 - 04:58 PM

Gloucester County will not be issuing bounties to hunters who kill or trap coyotes. The decision followed an update and discussion among animal control staff and the Gloucester County Board of Supervisors Tuesday night in the colonial courthouse about the growing concern of coyotes harming livestock in areas of the county.

Steve Baranek, senior deputy control officer, also reported to supervisors that there had been another attack at Gordon Llewellyn’s farm in Glenns Saturday during the day, resulting in the loss of one calf.

The matter came to the attention of the board at its Feb. 1 meeting. At that time, Llewellyn had lost 23 cattle, all believed to have been victims of coyote attacks.

At that meeting, it was the consensus of the board to be educated on coyotes and safety issues regarding the animals. The idea was also tossed around about issuing a county ordinance that would allow the payment of a bounty to hunters if they kill coyotes, in hopes of reducing the coyote population.

According to Baranek’s research, a majority of the counties in Virginia that have tried to issue bounties stopped either because of budget constraints or because the process proved ineffective in cutting down on the coyote population.