CORNELIUS, N.C. -- Police say users of the McDowell Creek Greenway in Mecklenburg County should use caution on the trail between Cornelius and Huntersville where coyotes have been spotted.

The Charlotte Observer reported Thursday a resident saw several coyotes while walking her dog on the greenway earlier this week.

Cornelius police Lt. David Baucom is advising people to remain alert while walking on the greenway, especially when accompanied by pets or children.

Mecklenburg County Parks and Recreation officials say coyotes first appeared in the area in the mid-1990s. They weigh 30 to 40 pounds as adults.

Attacks on humans are rare, but tend to occur when an animal is feeling threatened.

Wildlife officials advise slowly backing away, yelling and throwing items if approached by an aggressive coyote.

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