Classes got off to a wild start at Mission Middle School in Riverside Monday morning.
Riverside County Animal Services was called after employees encountered a coyote inside a building around 9 a.m.
The frightened animal scurried into a restroom where it tried to hide in a stall next to a toilet.
Animal Services officer Will Luna arrived and recorded video as he approached the coyote with a catch pole.
“Hey guy, let’s get you out of here,” Luna can be heard saying in the video.
Luna successfully lassoed the male coyote, believed to be roughly 9 months old, and later released it into a rural area away from the school, Animal Services said.
School staffers told Luna the coyote, nicknamed “Wile E.” after the Warner Bros. character, had been spotted several times in recent weeks, but was never seen on school grounds until Monday.
“We are pleased that this incident was smooth and all the children were OK and we were able to get the coyote back to its more natural habitat,” said Erin Gettis, Director of Riverside County Animal Services.