Denise Berntson, who lives on Hamilton Court in Davenport, got a surprise Tuesday morning.
She was taking her grandson to school shortly after 8 a.m. when a good-sized animal ran in front of her truck.
"It stopped to look at me," said Berntson, who took a few pictures before it ran off. "I thought it was a fox."
Berntson lives near a cornfield and sometimes sees deer in her neighborhood.
She showed the photos to friends, who told her they thought it was a coyote.
That was confirmed by Curt Kemmerer, of Maquoketa, Iowa, wildlife biologist for Iowa Department of Natural Resources-Scott County.
"That's a coyote, all right," he said. "It probably would surprise people how common they are. They do live among us."
Kemmerer said coyotes, which try to avoid contact with people, normally are nocturnal, but do appear sometimes during the day. "They've learned to come out after dark and find an evening meal," he said.
The animals have adapted to all kinds of environments across the country, he said.
He said he gets calls every year about coyotes, which have a range of sizes.
He called Berntson's encounter a "neat opportunity to see a beautiful animal up close."
Images source: QC Times/Denise Berntson