International Development, Community and Environment (IDCE)

Date of Award

12-2017

Degree Type

Research Paper

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Community Development and Planning (CDP)

Department

International Development, Community and Environment

Chief Instructor

Jody Emel

Second Reader

Kathryn Madden

Abstract

Urbanization and habitat fragmentation cause animal species to either adjust to human- dominated landscapes or suffer population loss. This paper examines the municipal challenges associated with coyotes, an animal successfully adapting to cities throughout North America. The presence of predators in highly developed areas challenges conceptual and spatial attempts to separate cities from nature. This report’s introductory sections critically examine the alienation of wildlife from the urban form. Theoretical perspectives from the discipline of animal geographies are employed to deconstruct problematic relationships between cities and animals, and reimagine a metropolis that considers the presence of nonhuman others. Engaging Jennifer Wolch’s transspecies urban theory and concept of Zoöpolis, policy interventions concerning wildlife are explored using Chicago’s response to well-established urban coyote populations. I used a participant observation method to collect data on coyote management planning, spending three months as a Mayoral Fellow with the city of Chicago. I rewrote Chicago’s Coyote Management and Coexistence Plan during my internship. I use this experience to analyze the effectiveness of wildlife management plans in accomplishing the objectives outlined by theoretical contributions advocating for animal needs in the context of cities. If implemented effectively, the plan will play a role in shaping coexistence, however, more steps are needed in revitalizing urban relationships to wildlife.

Available for download on Monday, December 07, 2020

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