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Wild coyote statue.

Coyotes: Back in New York City

Field review by the editors.

Bronx, New York

It's a testament to the persistence of Mother Nature that wild coyotes -- yes, coyotes -- have in recent years reappeared within New York City: in Woodlawn Cemetery, Central Park, on the Columbia University campus, and even in trendy Tribeca near the West Side Highway. The first of these modern sightings took place in Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx, and in 1998 the city decided to pay tribute to the canny canine with a boulder-topping sculpture placed at the park's southwest entrance.

The bronze statue is larger-than-life, and its inscription notes that it commemorates the first confirmed coyote sighting in New York City since 1946. Unfortunately, the 29-pound female was hit and killed on the infamously scary nearby Major Deegan Expressway (You would never know from the statues proud stance that its inspiration was roadkill). The Parks Department found another (injured) coyote that year, put it out of its misery, and had it stuffed. That one served as reference for the husband-and-wife sculpting team of Glenn and Diane Hines, who named the bronze statue "Major" in honor of the coyote's last stand.

A breeding population of coyotes is said to exist within the park. We wish them luck, and hope that their survival skills include avoiding traffic.

Coyotes: Back in New York City

Van Cortlandt Park S., Bronx, NY
The statue stands just inside the southwestern entrance to Van Cortlandt Park, on the corner of Broadway and Van Cortlandt Park S.
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Nearby Offbeat Places

Queen of the Universe Shrine: Mary was HereQueen of the Universe Shrine: Mary was Here, Bronx, NY - < 1 mi.
Last House of Edgar Allan PoeLast House of Edgar Allan Poe, Bronx, NY - 1 mi.
Gates of the Famous from 1995Gates of the Famous from 1995, Bronx, NY - 2 mi.
In the region:
Tribute to NYC's Sewer Alligator, New York, NY - 12 mi.

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