Regarding the concerns about coyotes in the Washington area [Metro, Nov. 1]:

I wrote a story for The Post in the late 1980s about the coyotes' arrival in this area. Wildlife experts told me that the breed migrated from the west, then made its way down the East Coast from New England.

Coyotes find plenty of easy prey in our area. As The Post's outdoor writer Angus Phillips has explained, the Potomac River is the finest urban wilderness river in the world, and it is a perfect habitat for coyotes.

A friend who hunts deer, elk and mountain lions out west told me a few years ago that he saw a canine in the Vienna area that was definitely not a coyote. He said it looked like pictures he had seen of a red wolf.

About a month ago, I was driving toward the Potomac River early in the morning from my Glen Echo Heights home. I saw a canine that was taller than a coyote, with skinny legs and a semi-scruffy coat. It wore no collar. The animal was light gray with a red tawny coat covering its ribs.

It could have been a red wolf or a wolf-dog or wolf-coyote mix. But whatever it was, I expect more such sightings in our Potomac urban wilderness, including black bears as they move east from Western Maryland.



A red wolf.