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Seal Beach Holds Town Hall To Discuss City's Ugly Coyote Problem

SEAL BEACH ( — Hundreds of Seal Beach residents held a town-hall meeting Wednesday to discuss the city's exploding coyote problem.

The problem is getting so serious that that residents have created a Facebook page — Coyotes Are A Problem For Seal Beach — to warn others about sightings.

In a matter of weeks, KCAL9's Stacey Butler said, the group has more than 400 members.

Residents told Butler the coyotes are "exploding" in number, and the animals are getting so brazen and aggressive that many in Seal Beach are afraid to walk alone at night.

On the Facebook page, one resident uploaded video of a Chihuahua mix named Trixie being attacked by a coyote. Seconds later, Trixie's friend Happy, a Rottweiler, arrives on scene to run off the coyote, saving Trixie's life.

"I've been here five years, and I used to be able to walk at night with my dog," said Kathe Ballestrari. "Now, I can't. Every bush, I'm afraid of. There could be a coyote behind every bush. I'm carrying an air horn, I have a whistle, I have a stick."

"Today alone, there were three sightings," said Denise Simmerman, who also said coyotes have killed neighborhood pets.

Simmerman said: "Just this week" there were five reports of pets being killed. "It's out of control," she added.

Experts are not sure if the drought is to blame. Some say lack of food and water is causing the coyotes to venture into more populated areas.

Residents told Butler they were frustrated after the meeting because wildlife officials said they wouldn't trap coyotes anytime soon.

The only time officials will intervene is when the coyote poses a threat to people.

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