2018-01-24 / Front Page

‘Don’t Kill Dumbo,’ Activists Say

By Liz Goff
He’s looking for his family.

A wily coyote spotted roaming grasslands near LaGuardia Airport spends time with his head raised, barking and crying into the distance in search of his siblings, who were killed along with their parents last year by agents at the Port Authority and the US Department of Agriculture, animal activists said.

The coyote dubbed “Dumbo” by activists is currently the target of USDA agents who, along with Port Authority officials have reneged on an agreement to capture him and send him to an animal sanctuary. “They lied,” activists said.

Instead of trying to capture Dumbo, USDA agents spent at least one morning last week trying to kill him, airport shuttle bus driver Rose Ortega said.

Representatives of both agencies announced the deal a year ago, to catch and send Dumbo to an animal sanctuary in western New York State, after USDA agents captured and killed seven of its family members.

USDA and Port Authority officials said they still hope to safely capture and relocate Dumbo, but animal activists are skeptical. “They’re here to kill him,” Ortega said. “It’s that simple. Ortega said the USDA agents and Port Authority police were actively searching for Dumbo on the morning of January 17, to capture and kill him.

Airport workers said Dumbo isn’t a violent creature. “He has never hurt or even attempted to attack anyone. He’s not a dangerous animal,” workers said. “You can hear him out there sometimes barking and howling. It sounds like he’s just looking for his family.”

Port Authority officials said they are just trying to capture Dumbo to send him to the sanctuary, to live out his life in a pleasant environment.

“Protecting the public and employees at LaGuardia Airport is the Port Authority’s highest priority and the agency is concerned by reports that a coyote has returned to a nearby parking area,” the Port Authority said in a prepared statement.

“They’ll find a reason to kill him if they capture him,” workers said. “They’ll say he was vicious or he tried to attack them, but we know better.”








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