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Hungry Coyotes


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I use a nearby piece of acreage to work/walk the dogs in during winter. Its basically one of my bird covers and has a slew of old apple trees, edges, small fields etc--in other words good bird cover and deer cover.

I've been in there a few times this winter and am seeing very little if any deer activity as in tracks, or areas scraped up to get to drop apples etc. This is usually a heavily visited spot in winter for deer

Actually the first time I ventured there I saw tracks everywhere and wondered where the hell were all these deer during the hunting season--until I noticed it was all coyote tracks.

Then I noticed coyote scat all over that looked like mini fruit cakes with almost all apple in the scat. Only a little hair in some that looked more like snowshoe hare than deer. (I don't spend all my time examining coyote shiit-don't concern yourself)

There is no question the deer herd took a whack last winter and is down and I don't know about the hare population but these yotes must be hungry to be eating so much apple I would think.

I don't really care much about yote survival and hunt/call them on occasion and frankly this would be a great time to call them in given these circumstances.

Just an observation of what I am seeing out there.

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  • Brad Eden

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Rhode Island
these yotes must be hungry to be eating so much apple I would think.

I don't really care much about yote survival and hunt/call them on occasion and frankly this would be a great time to call them in given these circumstances.

What does an apple sound like  ???

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"Chomp, chomp"

Fact is if they are so hungry they are digging through a foot of snow to get to frozen apples--some distress rabbit calls should get them running in.

Duh.... ???  :cool:

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Add a little moving decoy and your all set that little 7-08 would work just fine:D
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PartridgeCartridge

I am sure that Brad, the consummate woodsman and fine steward of Maine wildlife, will take a prime coyote. I am also sure that he would never waste an animal just for sport. I eagerly await his report on the table qualities of this fine animal.

Apple stuffed coyote?

That reminds me, how does red squirrel taste?

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Add a little moving decoy and your all set that little 7-08 would work just fine:D

I've used one of those battery operated balls on a stick wrapped in what looks like a stuffed animal decoys. They bounce around and bob and weave etc. They work great to keep the attention of coyote focused--not on you. And I carry a couple mouth distress calls around my neck but have found the digital remote callers to be very effective.

I use my 12 gauge camo 870 turkey shotgun w/#2 buckshot when I coyote hunt. I got sick of trying to shoot a stutter stopping, testing the wind, catching scent and booking it to the wood line coyote--with the rifle. Plus most areas around here are tight quarters and a shotgun that can reach out to 40+ yards works pretty good. Using the "kiss of death"--basically sucking on the web of your hand between thumb and first finger-creating a squeaky mouse sound will help them commit.

None of that LONG RANGE SHOOTING for me. :laugh:

Coyotes are the only thing I will hunt that I dont eat (besides red squirrels) and I rarely do hunt them. But when winter cabin fever reaches a feverish pitch its a good excuse to get out of doors. In all I have done very little to curb the coyote population around here.

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Michael Stenstrom
My dogs are still digging out apples as well.  If the coyotes are in the orchard so heavily it might be keeping the deer out.  I hope to get out an do a little coyote calling soon.  i owe them.  I am actually going to try with the recurve.  Should be a challenge.  Might have to drop back to gun  later.
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My dogs are still digging out apples as well.  If the coyotes are in the orchard so heavily it might be keeping the deer out.  I hope to get out an do a little coyote calling soon.  i owe them.  I am actually going to try with the recurve.  Should be a challenge.  Might have to drop back to gun  later.

Yeah you owe them!

Lets do this--this winter--your area or mine.

We can set things up to give you the best advantage with the bow. i can back up with shotgun or rifle. I have calls and my moving decoy was broken but I think I can fix it.

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PartridgeCartridge

Couldn't you just try a little, say a small backstrap, and tell us what's its like?

Red squirrel or Coyote, makes no difference to us.

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Brad I have the same decoy it also works well stuffed in a Turkey decoy.

The Decoy, the digital caller, the little 17HMR and I plan to be busy here this winter.  The main thing I have learned about hunting yotes is find the food source if you find that you will find yotes but when it is gone so are they.  Remember a yote eats it weight each week so they are always looking for a meal.

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L. Gallagher

Coyotes actually eat very little venison, just the occasional sick or weak deer, or roadkill. Most of their diet, in fact, tends to be on the vegetarian side, and apples, in any form, are preferred...especially after they've frozen and the alcohol limit is higher...LOL

Winter, trappers tell me, is the best time of year for coyotes...summer is when they have a hard time, add in the pups they must feed, and you understand that. Winter, when there's lots of death in the woods, is fine dining.

And they're traditional long-distance travelers...if need be. If they're really hungry, they'll move. But if you're seeing lots of sign in one area, that's cause they are finding food there. And hearing them howl and yip in the winter is actually them laughing...at all of us.

If it's legal in your state, set out some sort of roadkill as a decoy. Give it a day or so, then set up in that area with the wind in your favor after dark.

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I tried it last year (a few outings) and only saw a fischer cat (sp).  I doubt I 'called it in.'  But it was fun and the best part is that it does get you out there in the dead of winter.  Haven't tried nighttime hunting yet but last nights full moon made me think of it.  This year i'll add the decoy to the mix and see how that goes.  

They're certainly around as i hear them yipping/howling.  I've been told the yipping comes after they've made a kill or found something to eat.

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Feb is the time of year they are most vocal this is breeding time for them and the males are singing for the gals.

A great place to get advice on local yote populations is from the local USDA office they are the only agency that keeps track of farm kills caused by yotes

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Michael Stenstrom
Don't worry Al I'll give you a ring.  As for the whole prey only on the weak and sick thing.  That was more of a theory made valid for thousands of non scientists by Farley Mowat in his "Never Cry Wolf".  A study done here in Maine looked at coyote deer kills and road kills. It found the deer to have the same levels of health (based on fat content of bone marrow) over all the deer studied.  So according to the study (which in my opinion should have been biased toward the weak and sick since the deer moving around enough to be hit by cars should have been relatively healthy) coyotes are totally opportunistic, and if they can catch a healthy deer thhey will take it down as readily as a weak or sick one.
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