Reported weekend coyote sighting in playfield puts Southgate elementary schools on alert

Southgate (WXYZ) - Cold weather and a reported coyote sighting forced cancelation of recess for elementary students in Southgate on Monday.

A nearby resident spotted the coyote on the school play field at Shelters Elementary.  The grounds supervisor informed his boss, Southgate Community Schools superintendent William Grusecki, of the report.

“All of our elementaries have a big field behind them and  it’s all surrounded by residential area," Grusecki said. "Word got to him that somebody saw what they thought was a Coyote over the weekend.”

With students' safety in mind, Grusecki took additional steps.

“I called the Southgate public safety director, just to let him know, make him aware. He was then going to contact animal control," Grusecki said. "Talked to our building principal, made her aware of the situation. Just told everybody to keep an eye open.”

One resident, whose property borders the school play field, told 7 Action News he watched the animal through binoculars. 

Jennifer Bicknell lives in the condo complex located behind the play field. She had not heard of the coyote sighting and said it was concerning to her.

"I have two small dogs and a child," Bicknell said.  “I haven’t heard anything and typically the neighbors let everybody know if something is going on in the area."

Grusecki points to Michigan's hard winter as one possible explanation for animals movement into the city. “It’s been a rough winter for everything, not only those of us walking on two feet but the four-legged kind," he said.  "They are going to migrate to places where they normally would not to find food.”



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