Coyotes Avoid People If Possible

I watched a coyote make its rounds to hunting areas in the morning. Of particular interest was the calmness and easiness with which a coyote did so, heading off in one direction, finishing there, and moving on to another one close by.  For the most part, whenever a person came along on a path, the coyote was able to “duck” out of the picture without ever being seen — even if the person had come quite close. If they can avoid it, coyotes would prefer not to be seen. They tend to go the other way if people are around.

But surprise encounters on a path do occur. Again, the coyotes have bound off when a walker has come too close, or it has meandered off slowly if the coyote first noticed the walker at a farther distance.

Yesterday I watched as a group of people saw a coyote come down a path. I’m sure both the group of people and the coyote were a bit surprised, but it was a calm, comfortable surprise. Yes, just like the rest of us, a coyote uses the trails because these are “the paths of least resistance!”  The people were all keenly interested in the coyote, but obviously they did not want to interfere with it, so they stopped and watched with their leashed dogs at the far end of the path. The coyote kept right on walking within about 100 feet of them, then stopped and turned back. But I was that same distance in back of the coyote. The coyote, all very calmly, turned and again walked towards the people for a few more paces and then veered off the path onto and down the grassy hillside . There was no skittishness or panicky activity in the coyote, just a matter-of-fact and calm dealing with what had been presented. The coyote had not acted “threatened”. Both coyote and people were very matter-of-fact about the encounter!

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