Wild Coyotes Spotted in Wrigleyville

Two wild animals observed outside Wrigley Field on busy Saturday night

Wrigleyville has a reputation of attracting some party animals, but things got wild in a different way over the weekend.

Two wild coyotes were spotted hanging around Wrigley Field late Saturday night.

Will Byington was photographing a live band at the Cubby Bear when the doormen reported that a couple of coyotes were outside the stadium by the Ernie Banks statue. Byington, armed with his camera, and a couple of employees headed outside to investigate.

"The scary thing is that they didn't seem afraid. You'd think they'd be cowering, but they didn't seem vicious," Byington said. Some people were laughing, and started following them, but they didn't seem concerned. They seemed to be checking out the neighborhood and enjoying it."

Byington said the coyotes looked to be fairly young and guesses that they were looking for food. At least judging by their fascination with the McDonald's on the other side of Clark Street. He says the coyotes hung out for a couple of minutes before walking through the players parking lot and toward the firehouse on Waveland.

"First time I've ever seen it," said Byington, who lives in Wrigleyville. "You hear stories about them venturing out and spotted around parks and whatnot, but they were right in the street with cars zooming by and honking. It didn't seem to phase them."

Research suggests the coyote population in suburban Chicago is growing. Earlier this month, an Antioch Chihuahua survived an attack by two coyotes. Earlier this year, a 16-pound dog was attacked in a fenced in yard in Wheaton but survived. An attack a week before that, was fatal. And don't forget about the coyote that made it all the way down to a Loop Metra station last year.

A recent Ohio State University study estimated that there may be somewhere between several hundred and a couple thousand coyotes living in Chicago, with some of the animals living in city parks and others among apartment and commercial buildings and in industrial parks.

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