Drought, heat causing critters in the city
TYLER — According to Tyler Animal Control, June was one of the highest number of wildlife spotting calls they've received. In June, more than 140 calls were made to animal control, to remove critters, whereas, last July that number was only a third of that at around 50 calls. Brenda Elrod, with the Health Department says the spike is due to extreme drought conditions and heat. She says these critters are seeking refuge in the city for water to drink, cool off in and for food. Spottings of everything from a bobcat to a red fox is more and more common in Smith County she says, and it's no wonder people are finding them in their backyards this time of year. But Elrod says never approach a critter or wild animal because you never know if they're rabid, poisonous, or will bite. She says usually they will return to their own habitat and if not call animal control right away.
Here are some tips on how to avoid seeing critters in your city backyard:
Never leave trash out. If in a trash can, make sure the lid is fastened on tightly.
Never leave any food out, whether it's animal, dog, cat or human food.
Make sure your yard is mowed and trimmed, critters like to burrow into shady, bushy areas.
Jessica Wilson/ KETKnbc.com