PORTMIAMI, Fla. (WSVN) – A coyote that was pulled from the water at PortMiami will be euthanized.
The situation began just before 7 a.m. Tuesday when Miami-Dade Fire Rescue crews responded to the south side of the port, located at 1015 North America Way, to find the animal stuck between a dock wall and a large buoy.
7SkyForce HD flew over the scene where several crew members could be seen trying to make space between the buoy and the wall so the coyote could be released.
Shortly after, the animal could be seen swimming in the water as crew members worked to lasso it and get it on board the fire boat.
“We had a call for a dog in the water off the Port of Miami. When we arrived to the scene, we found that we could see from the sea wall that there was a four-legged animal down in the water, and he was resting on some type of a ledge,” said Javier Perez with Miami-Dade Fire Rescue. “The minute we all came to the edge, we startled him, and he started making his way along the sea wall, and he decided to jump in the water and go for a swim.”
The coyote appeared exhausted after swimming for at least 30 minutes.
“I think he’s resting, and he knows we’re not here to hurt him,” said Perez. “We’re here to help him.”
The coyote was brought on board and appeared to be OK as it sat restrained next to a firefighter.
“We didn’t want him to get into any harm, and we didn’t want any of the boat traffic to cause any harm for him,” said Perez.
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officials first said the animal would be taken to the Wildlife Rescue of Dade County in Homestead, but later said it will be humanely euthanized instead.
“The reason I was given was that coyotes are considered to be nuisance animals,” said Lloyd Brown of Wildlife Rescue of Miami-Dade County. “In my opinion, the coyotes are native wildlife.”
The director said he spent the morning making room and preparing for the arrival of a new patient.
“We were ready to vaccinate it against parvo, distemper and rabies,” said Brown.
When asked what he would do with the coyote if he had the authority to decide, Brown said, “We’d have the coyote on this table right here taking care of him right now. We’re set up ready to take an animal in. We would have loved to have the opportunity to try and save this guy and put it back in the wild.”
The FWC released an official statement mentioning that the coyote had been euthanized but offered no explanation of why the decision was made. When contacted prior to the release of their statement, they said the determination to euthanize the coyote was a “high level decision.”
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