KINGSBURY — A woman was seriously hurt Wednesday morning when she was attacked by what she believed was a coyote near the Five Combines park on the Feeder Canal.
Police responded by closing the Feeder Canal Trail from the Five Combines canal locks to the village of Fort Edward line until further notice as officers from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, Fort Edward Police and state Department of Environmental Conservation searched for the animal.
Both conservation officers and representatives of the DEC Bureau of Wildlife were involved in the effort to find the animal, police said.
Washington County Sheriff Jeff Murphy said the woman was on a trail in the park near the Five Combines when she was attacked at about 11:30 a.m. She jumped in the canal to get away from the animal.
She was taken to Albany Medical Center via helicopter for treatment of leg, arm and facial injuries, Murphy said.
“She was injured pretty badly,” he said.
On Tuesday night, Fort Edward Police received a call from a person who reported a coyote trying to attack them and a dog in the area, and officers from that agency and the Sheriff’s Office searched for the canine but could not find it, Murphy said.
Murphy said it is feared that the animal is rabid, and residents of the area should take precautions and call police if they see a coyote acting unusually.
They are typically nocturnal and try to avoid contact with humans, so attacks on people are rare.
Police could not recall any recent local coyote attacks on people, though a horse in Queensbury was believed to have been attacked by one in 2013.
The DEC said there have been coyote attacks on people around New York over the years, but none in the southern Adirondacks in recent memory.