The attack, which occurred close to midnight June 11, was committed by a single coyote. It sent the teens, who were there for a Boy Scout activity, to Mission Hospital for treatment, according to the City of Mission Viejo.
The following morning, a Lake Oso camp manager contacted Mission Viejo Animal Services, which covers a variety of cities, including Rancho Santa Margarita.
Animal services interviewed the victims and obtained statements from witnesses and employees of the Boy Scout camp.
The exact method of attack was not disclosed.
An animal services officer is working with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife Game Wardens to collect DNA evidence, in an effort identify the coyote involved. Officers are also educating camp staff about safe camping practices in the wild.
“In situations of contact close contact, there’s a possibility of rabies being transmitted,” Michelle Claud-Clemente, animal services manager for Mission Viejo Animal Services told The Epoch Times. “Typically they’ll try to collect DNA samples that you can match with the coyote, so that you’re certain that you have the right animal.”
The DNA is also useful in identifying problematic behavior, such as if the same coyote were likely to attack again, Claud-Clemente said. The state’s Department of Fish and Wildlife Game will decide whether the coyote, if caught, will be euthanized, she added.