Description Of One Coyote Area

Janet,  I went with Bud this evening so he could show me the details of his encounter with the pups. He also showed me where they dashed into the blackberries and there is definitely a pathway there if you know where to look.  There has been a great deal of scat on that portion of the trail since Feb. which is why I suspected a den.

I did see five piles of scat that were left within the last 24 hours along the trail closer to our house and on the way to the sighting location.  Three of those piles were from large coyotes so I’m confident there is a parent around.  I will now worry less about the pups.  One thing I noticed that I have not seen before  is one pile of scat that had another one on top and around it.  They seemed to be about the same age – probably several days.  Is there a significance to this?  This was very near where the pups dashed into the blackberries.

A dog walker who I recognized told me that she had encounters with two different coyotes very recently.  The first was with an old, lame coyote which turned and trotted up the trail.  This coyote has been spotted often in and near the greenspace.  The second was just two days ago and that coyote stood in the center of the path and stared at her and her two dogs.  She said that the coyote did not appear to be afraid of her and wasn’t moving so she turned her larger dog lose to chase it off!  Her dog returned within minutes and they continued their walk.  Both of these sightings were in the same area and not near the area where Bud saw the pups.

About three weeks ago someone dumped about 25 salmon along side the road near the entrance to the trail where she saw the coyotes.  There is also an entrance very near that one which we use that has an abundance of rabbits.  The coyotes are in the area daily I would guess although the scat now also has cherry pits.  Ginny

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Hi Ginny — There is a lot of information here — a pretty complete picture in a nutshell!  Thank you for sharing it!  There is a den hidden by blackberries back and away from a trail, and a semi-hidden path leading to it, with scat at or close to its entrance. I’m wondering if what you describe as “one pile of scat on top and around another” might just be the “marking” by one coyote on top of the last guy’s marking which is typical of all canines? Or, it might be that a parent is “covering over” a pup’s scent?  I have never seen two scats on top of each other, so I am speculating.

Your friend’s two encounters show two kinds of reactions: coyotes often trot off quickly when they see a person or a dog, but they sometimes will delay and study what is coming their way before leaving, being almost forced to leave at the last minute. 

I have found that coyotes who live in urban areas do not appear always to be afraid of humans, although they do keep a safe distance away; they learn to take people and dogs in stride once they become accustomed to seeing them for a period of time. This is, unless a dog threatens them in which case a chronic antagonistic relationship could develop between the dog and coyote.

That you have an injured coyote is interesting — I hope it is just a temporary injury — you described that coyote as old. Old age takes its toll on all of us, including wild animals. It is interesting for me to find out how these senior citizens cope in their declining years.  I’ve seen a lame (temporarily lame) young coyote hurry away from dogs from a much further distance than he did before or after the injury, so this may have had something to do with the older fella hurrying off. But also, each coyote is an individual with its own personality, and some tend to be shyer and more careful, and some bolder than others.

The salmon must have been a feast for all the wildlife around:  raccoons, skunks, raptors as well as the coyotes. Scat reveals a lot about coyote diets.  Coyotes are opportunistic eaters — which means they can eat almost anything that is edible. I guess they found a cherry tree!


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