Police are warning residents after a series of coyote sightings in town to take precautions against making potential food sources available to the wild animals, and to make sure that pets are kept out of harms way.

In a Jan. 8 memo to the police chief and released to the press, an officer related the concerns of one resident that a litter of pups may be living in Forest Park. A woman reported that she had not seen any young coyotes, but suspected that a den may be located on the 900 block of Thomas after she recently noted that a coyote appeared to be significantly thinner. Officers searched the area and found no signs of the coyote or a den.

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources encourages people not to feed the animals, and to keep trash, bird food and pet food secure so as not to attract coyotes. Also, according to the police memo, the state department asks that residents recognize “that coyotes are a permanent fixture in urban/suburban landscapes.” Attempts to reduce their population are temporary, at best.