Skunks, coyotes and turkeys: Wildlife spottings increase around Montreal
MONTREAL -- Some Montrealers have noticed a marked increase in wildlife sightings within city limits.
Experts say quieter roads, skies, and neighbourhoods have drawn animals like skunks, coyotes, and even turkeys out into the open.
"One of the few silver linings of this pandemic is that it's giving them a little peace and quiet, a little relief from us," said Harriet Schleifer, a wildlife rehabilitator with Urban Animal Advocates.
Now is the perfect opportunity to watch these animals from a distance, said Schleifer.
“They're good at social distancing. They know how to do their part of it. As long as we do our part, it'll be fine. Generally speaking, wildlife aren't interested in causing problems with us. They just -- if they feel threatened they'll react." she said.
Montreal Ecomuseum Director David Rodrigue said he believes Montrealers are just noticing the animals more since many are stuck at home and have the chance to pay closer attention.
"We might see more, better breeding success in the Spring of 2020," he said.
Experts warn Montrealers not to feed the animals.
"Enjoy the moment, it's always a great thing to see wildlife but feeding animals creates what we call habituation," said Rodrigue. "They lose their fear of people and mostly they associate people with food. That's a big problem because at the end of the day, most of the time that results in a bad outcome for the animal."