Conservation officers are combing through Stanley Park in Vancouver in search of a coyote that attacked three people Wednesday morning.
The B.C. Conservation Officer Service (COS) says a man was doing yoga at Prospect Point around 8 a.m. PT when he was approached by a coyote who bit him on the arm.
The man then chased the coyote away. But shortly after — and about 200 metres from where the man was attacked — the animal attacked a runner on the road.
A witness who tried to intervene was also bitten in the arm and leg.
All three victims were adults and were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, according to the COS.
Prospect Point and all nearby trails are temporarily closed.
"We are asking the public to respect these closures for their own safety," said the service in a Facebook post.
"The COS strongly urges anyone recreating in Stanley Park to be aware and prepared that they may encounter an aggressive coyote — an alternative location is advised."
Coyote attacks an ongoing problem
This isn't the first time there have been coyote attacks in Stanley Park.
Between December 2020 and mid-April this year there had been at least 17 coyote attacks in the popular Vancouver destination.
The COS previously told CBC News that coyotes can be more visible and assertive in March and April as they prepare to raise pups, but officials say the behaviours displayed in the biting incidents are more consistent with the animals losing their fear of humans because they are likely being fed.
Most of the previous attacks have happened around dusk or dawn.
People in the park should not feed coyotes or leave food out for animals, say wildlife officials.