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High temperatures bringing out hungry, thirsty wild animals

PHOENIX -- Spring is here and the wildlife is coming out looking for food and water.

Valley residents can expect to see bobcats, coyotes, javelina and other wildlife just about anywhere there's a greenbelt, park, lake, path or golf course. Grey Stafford with the Wildlife World Zoo in Litchfield Park said with our exceptionally dry conditions, the animals will be looking for food and water and they will lose the fear of people just to find it.

"It's so important for people to secure the trash, especially if you live in the more remote part of town because you don't want to provide a food source for wildlife," he said. "When they become habituated to human beings, that's when it becomes dangerous for everyone."

Stafford said if you have seen wildlife in the neighborhood then you need to keep a close eye on children and pets.

"We don't need to be paranoid but we need to be aware that we share the area with wildlife."

Linda Lambert with Arizona Game and Fish said wild animals are always more active in the springtime but, so far, they haven't seen a higher number of calls despite the abnormally dry winter and spring.

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About the Author


Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Have covered some of the biggest stories in Arizona including nine of the top 10 largest wildfires in state history. The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. Covered the Yarnell Hill Tragedy in June 2013 that left 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots dead.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges and Lonesome Dove.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, Texas Longhorns, The University of Montana Grizzlies.

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