Gold Country Wildlife Rescue released a healthy, antsy female coyote into El Dorado County on Sunday evening, one month after rescuing it from the brink of fatal dehydration.
The coyote had originally been spotted with a thick plastic jar firmly secured atop of its head, which inhibited its ability to eat and drink over nearly two weeks. When a search party finally corralled it Feb. 5 near Cool, the coyote had dwindled down to 15 pounds, sprayed by a skunk and suffered tick and flea infestations as well as a related blood disease.
Gold Country Wildlife Rescue staff and volunteers treated the coyote for its illnesses and slowly reintroduced semi-natural foods to its diet such as skinless chicken and mice with tails removed.
In the last week the coyote's weight increased up to 21 pounds and it became ornery with Gold Country Wildlife Rescue volunteers. That was a good sign, the nonprofit said on its Facebook page, that it was done being held in captivity and wanted to be released to the wild.
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The coyote shot out of its cage Sunday night down a hill near where it was rescued in Cool. Free of tags or other tracking devices, it's ready to reintegrate itself into the foothills' natural environment.
Benjy Egel: (916) 321-1052, firstname.lastname@example.org