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Coyotes Just the Latest Animal to Invade Manhattan's Urban Jungle

By DNAinfo Staff on March 26, 2010 3:39pm  | Updated on March 29, 2010 5:51am

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DNAinfo/Jason Tucker

By Mariel S. Clark and Jason Tucker

DNAinfo Staff

MANHATTAN — New York's urban jungle has been crawling with critters in the past few years with coyotes, rabid raccoons, dolphins, deer and rare raptors invading the neighborhoods.

DNAinfo tracked the abundance of wild animals that had strayed toward Manhattan and found that many of them prefer to hang out in the swankier parts of the city.

A rabid raccoon wasn't looking to pay too much for a pair of aviator sunglasses when it somehow found its way into John Varvatos' SoHo shop.

Shortly afterwards, the diseased animal was put down and the city announced a vaccination program meant to curb the plague of rabid raccoons that had taken over Central Park.

Meanwhile, bald eagles were making themselves at home in Inwood Hill Park and a pair of dolphins were spotted swimming in the East River.

A deer was also spotted in New York's Harbor, presumably having entered the water in Jersey City, before swimming all the way to Governors Island.

This week, another animal believed to be native to New Jersey, a coyote, slipped through the Holland Tunnel and was found wandering around TriBeCa.

The coyote was eventually captured by police.

Despite the invasion of creatures from the rest of the country, New Yorkers' reactions to sharing their space with animals has tended to hover around the level of fuggedaboutit.

"It doesn't scare me because coyotes aren't predatory toward humans," said one man about the coyote captured in TriBeCa Thursday.

"I don't have any sheep to protect."