Having spent plenty of two-and-three-week chunks of the summertime in New Mexico on many occasions, I'm well aware of issues my relatives in the southwest deal with that we don't worry about at all in Kentucky. One big problem they have is wolves.

Out there, they have a very special wolf problem. Mexican wolves are an endangered species, but their numbers are growing in alarming fashion in New Mexico. Yes, they are endangered, but so are livestock when they are roaming free and increasing their population. Those who live in rural New Mexico--like my aunt and uncle--have the biggest concerns.


I think about their dilemma when I'm outside at night sometimes and hear OUR version of that particular issue--coyotes.

On those nights when we have those big, beautiful super moons, and when I'm outside on those nights--we live out in the county--the coyotes howl their heads off. And there are probably some dogs in the chorus as well, triggered by their wild canine relatives.

Obviously, you don't want to hear that at night, but THIS is the mating call. It's a little different.


Well, we're at the end of January, and coyote mating season has arrived in Kentucky. And you know that means, don't you? These pesky predators will be wandering more than usual. If it was simply deer we were discussing, I'd just warn you about driving cautiously. Certainly, that applies here, but coyotes have been known to roam more and more into the suburbs. And the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources is well aware of this predicament:

Coyotes roam more as breeding season begins in January and February. Their visibility continues into July as they care for their new pups. Sightings pick up again in the fall, when juveniles disperse to find their own territories.

Over the last few years, we've seen more and more reports of coyotes well within city limits. And with many suburbs situated OUTSIDE those limits, it'll pay to be vigilant with regards to coyotes. It will also pay NOT to do this:

The number one rule for dealing with coyotes is not to feed them or provide them with a food source. Discourage your neighbors from feeding coyotes or leaving food out for feral cats or other wildlife.


Be aware that any food you leave out could very well attract the kinds of animals that will lure coyotes onto your property. Also, if you feed your dog outside and there's any leftover food in the bowl, that could provide a tasty snack for a wandering coyote.

Mating season for coyotes lasts through February, so take the necessary precautions.

As for where we live, we have multiple neighborhood cats that have become friends with everyone. You can be sure I'll maintain my feline head count ritual.

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Because the regulation of exotic animals is left to states, some organizations, including The Humane Society of the United States, advocate for federal, standardized legislation that would ban owning large cats, bears, primates, and large poisonous snakes as pets.

Read on to see which pets are banned in your home state, as well as across the nation.

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A couple of these creatures would cross over into the "dangerous" category, but the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife says that these are ALL nuisances, and with good reason.

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Cats, dogs, certain birds, and aquarium fish are examples of pets you CAN own in Owensboro. Here are 14 you CANNOT own.

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