Animal Control Products
Animal Control Products

1-715-749-3857
Coyote Removal and Control Methods
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Contact Us
Animal Control Products
PO Box 115
Roberts, WI 54023
Ph: 715-749-3857
Fax: 715-749-9094
e-mail: barons@svtel.net
General Biology, Reproduction and Behavior
Coyotes are most active at night and during early morning hours (especially where human activity occurs), and during hot weather. Where there is minimal human interference and during cool weather, they may be active throughout the day.
Coyotes bed in sheltered areas but do not generally use dens except when raising young. They may seek shelter underground during severe weather or when closely pursued. Their physical abilities include good eyesight and hearing and a keen sense of smell. Documented recoveries from severe injuries are indicative of coyotes' physical endurance. Although not as fleet as greyhound dogs, coyotes have been measured at speeds of up to 40 miles per hour (64 km/hr) and can sustain slower speeds for several miles (km).
Distemper, hepatitis, parvo virus, and mange (caused by parasitic mites) are among the most common coyote diseases. Rabies and tularemia also occur and may be transmitted to other animals and humans. Coyotes harbor numerous parasites including mites, ticks, fleas, worms, and flukes. Mortality is highest during the first year of life, and few survive more than 10 to 12 years in the wild. Human activity is often the single cause of coyote mortality.
Coyotes usually breed in February and March, producing litters about 9 weeks (60 to 63 days) later in April and May. Females sometimes breed during the winter following their birth, particularly if food is plentiful. Average littler size is 5 to 7 pups, although up to 13 in a litter has been reported. More than one litter may be found in a single den; at times these may be females mated to a single male. As noted earlier, coyotes are capable of hybridizing with dogs and wolves, but reproductive dysynchrony and behaviors generally make it unlikely. Hybrids are fertile, although their breeding seasons do not usually correspond to those of coyotes.
Coyote dens are found in steep banks, rock crevices, sinkholes, and underbrush, as well as in open areas. Usually their dens are in areas selected for protective concealment. Den sites are typically located less than a mile (km) from water, but may occasionally be much farther away. Coyotes will often dig out and enlarge holes dug by smaller burrowing animals. Dens vary from a few feet (1 m) to 50 feet (15m) and may have several openings.
Both adult male and female coyotes hunt and bring food to their young for several weeks. Other adults associated with the denning pair may also help in feeding and caring for the young. Coyotes commonly hunt as singles or pairs; extensive travel is common in their hunting forays. They will hunt in the same area regularly, however, if food is plentiful. They occasionally bury food remains for later use.
Pups begin emerging from their den by 3 weeks of age, and within 2 months they follow adults to large prey or carrion. Pups normally are weaned by 6 weeks of age and frequently are moved to larger quarters such as dense brush parches and/or sinkholes around water courses. The adults and pups usually remain together until late summer or fall when pups become independent. Occasionally pups are found in groups until the breeding season begins.

Coyotes are successful at surviving and even flourishing in the presence of people because of the adaptable behavior and social system. They typically display increased reproduction and immigration in response to human-induced population reduction.
Damage and Damage Identification

Coyotes can cause damage to a variety of resources, including livestock, poultry, and crops such as watermelons. They sometimes prey on pets and are a threat to public health and safety when they frequent airport runways and residential areas, and act as carriers of rabies. usually, the prime concern regarding coyotes is predation on livestock, mainly sheep and lambs. Predation will be the focus of the following discussion.
Since coyotes frequently scavenge on livestock carcasses, the mere presence of coyote tracks or droppings near a carcass is not sufficient evidence that predation has taken place. Other evidence around the site and on the carcass must be carefully examined to aid in determining cause of death. Signs of a struggle may be evident. These may include scrapes or drag marks on the ground, broken vegetation, or blood in various places around the site. The quantity of sheep or calf remains left after a kill vary widely depending on how recently the kill was made, the size of the animal killed, the weather, and the number and species of predators that fed on the animal.
One key in determining whether a sheep or calf was killed by a predator is the presence or absence of subcutaneous (just under the skin) hemorrhage at the point of attack. Bites to a dead animal will not produce hemorrhage, but bites to live animals will. If enough of the sheep carcass remains, carefully skin our the neck and head to observe tooth punctures and hemorrhage around the punctures. Talon punctures from large birds of prey will cause hemorrhage, but the location of these is usually at the top of the head, neck, or back. This procedure becomes less indicative of predation as the age of the carcass increases or if the remains are scanty and scattered.
Coyotes, foxes, mountain lions, and bobcats usually feed on a carcass at the flanks or behind the ribs and first consume the liver, heart, lungs, and other viscera. Mountain lions often cover a carcass with debris after feeding on it. Bears generally prefer meat to viscera and often eat the udder from lactation ewes. Eagles skin out carcasses on larger animals and leave much of the skeleton intact. With small animals such as lambs, eagles may bite off and swallow the ribs. Feathers and "whitewash" (droppings) are usually present where an eagle has fed.
Coyotes may kill more than one animal in a single period, but often will only feed on one of the animals. Coyotes typically attack sheep at the throat, but young or inexperienced coyotes may attack any part of the body. Coyotes usually kill calves by eating into the anus or abdominal area.
Dogs generally do not kill sheep or calves for food and are relatively indiscriminate in how and where they attack. Sometimes, however, it is difficult to differentiate between dog and coyotes kills without also looking at other signs, such as size of tracks and spacing and size of canine tooth punctures. Coyote tracks tend to be more oval-shaped and compact than those of common dogs. Nail marks are less prominent and the tracks tend to follow a straight line more closely than those of dogs. The average coyote's stride at a trot is 16 to 18 inches (41 to 46 cm), which is typically longer than that of a dog of similar size and weight. Generally, dogs attack and rip the flanks, hind quarters, and head, and many chew ears. The sheep are sometimes still alive but may be severely wounded.
Accurately determining whether or not predation occurred and, if so, by what species, requires a considerable amount of knowledge and experience. Evidence must be gathered, pieced together, and then evaluated in light of the predators that are in the area, the time of day, the season of the year, and numerous other factors. Sometimes even experts are unable to confirm the cause of death, and it may be necessary to rely on circumstantial information.
Lures Traps Back 
Contact Us
Animal Control Products
PO Box 115
Roberts, WI 54023
Ph: 715-749-3857
Fax: 715-749-9094
e-mail: barons@svtel.net