Wily Coyote Dies Before Release Into the Wild By JAMES BARRON, The New York Times (April 1) - Hal, the coyote who led park rangers and police officers on a two-day chase in Central Park last month, died on Thursday, moments before he was to be released in a thousand-acre state forest in Putnam County. He was about a year old. He spent the last week of his life in the care of wildlife rehabilitators on Long Island. They turned him over to state biologists on "He was in good shape when he left me," one of the handlers, Rebecca Asman, said yesterday. "Maybe there were other things going on inside of Hal. He looked good to us. As far as outward appearance, he was eating very well and he was very calm, but coyotes are by nature very calm." The state biologists took him about 60 miles north of Manhattan to the California Hill State Forest in Putnam County, near Kent, N.Y., Ms. DeMarco said. There, she said, Hal stopped breathing when the biologists and Cornell University graduate researchers restrained him to put an identification tag on his ear. She said that a soft muzzle had been placed around Hal's snout, but it did not cover his nose. His legs had also been restrained, but he had not been tranquilized, she said.