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(NEW YORK) — It’s getting to be coyote ugly in New York City and neighboring northern New Jersey.

Authorities on the West Side of Manhattan went looking for a coyote that was reportedly spotted Wednesday morning. But despite a two-hour search beginning in Riverside Park that eventually involved a helicopter, five cruisers and cops on foot, the wily animal managed to slip away. 

It was the fourth coyote sighting in New York City in recent months.

In the New Jersey borough of Norwood, wildlife officials spotted two dens near a school.

Wildlife and animal control officials are helping with the situation, with traps set and extra patrols assigned to the area, Norwood police said.

According to wildlife experts, coyotes are more visible this time of year because it’s the start of their mating season, and they have been known to move closer to towns to find water and food.

Wildlife experts say some of the best ways to reduce the likelihood of a coyote encounter are keeping pets and pet food indoors at night; clearing out dense brush where they can hide; and, if you encounter a coyote, making loud noises or throwing something to scare it off.

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