Fur Markings Change as Winter Coats Come In


These two photos above are of the same coyote taken one month apart. During the Summer, photo on the right, coyotes retain a lighter-colored short undercoat which remains in place throughout the summer until it becomes buried by the longer winter, protective and weather-resistant coat with the markings, which comes in during the Fall.

Coyotes have a signature winter coat (photo above left and below left) usually has a crescent of black and white hairs — looking a little like a shawl — which can be seen over the upper back right below the shoulders. Each coyote sports a variation of this marking which can vary slightly in size, intensity of colors and color combination. Look at the variations of winter coats in the first photo to the left below.

The entire winter coat is amazingly thick and long — over 4″ — and and includes a very bushy tail, as seen in the full coat below. The same coyote urinating in the photo below, has a summer coat for the most part, but she hasn’t totally shed the winter coat which is still on her lower back where she hasn’t been able to reach with her claws: coyotes help the shedding process by scratching.

Coyote Biology, Behavior and Population Dynamics

click on the image to read the entire article

click on the image to read the entire article

Here is a bit of fascinating information which I’d like to help make more accessible to the public, regarding what we know about coyote population dynamics, territoriality and the attempt by humans to “control and manage” their populations, i.e. kill them.

For many years, we’ve been using this information — first documented by F.F. Knowlton in 1972 — to inform folks about the repercussions of eliminating coyotes: that killing them has the unintended consequence of actually increasing their populations.

This letter from Robert Crabtree, based on his observations and studies, sums up this information precisely, concisely and interestingly. Please click on the the thumbnail to the left to read it and learn more about the fascinating life of coyotes from it!