Monday, September 5, 2011

First Upper-Midwestern Coyotes

I always consider it sort of a treat to catch Coyotes (Canis latrans) on my camera traps.

They're wary as heck....which means that they can be a challenge to get pictures of.  Always fun.

The second we moved in to this new location, I knew Coyotes had to be around.  Rural landscape, agricultural fields on either side of us, a decent-sized woodlot behind, with a fallow grassland behind that.  These suspicions were partially confirmed when the landowners nearby said several times in convincing tones that there were Coyotes on the property.  I've only had time to make a quick loop or two around the perimeter of the forest/grassland fragment behind our house.  Both times I scared up a group of three to four turkeys (i.e., coyote food) and I saw some scat with potential to be coyote on one occasion (although it was alittle small, and perhaps a fox).

Anyways, I intend on actually getting cameras out further in the woods.  But actual work has not allowed me to do so thus far.  So I just set some cams near the back porch for now.

Off to our east is a small apple orchard, bordered by some planted pine trees to the north.  Tree lines are always great for the critters....especially when there's a potential food source (i.e. apples) nearby.

Although it's not a great picture, several weeks ago I finally got my first 'yote picture at the new place.  It appears to be a smallish individual that quickly skirts the border between the pines and the apple orchard, and is gone.

Not great pics.  It's basically out of range before the first picture is taken.  That's what a camera with a trigger speed of over 1 second will get you when the subject is moving at a good clip.

But at least I've confirmed they are here.

One would hope the presence of coyotes could scare off the feral cats I've been getting pictures of.   However, to-date that has not been the case.  We haven't seen evidence of coyotes within the vicinity of our house very often, which perhaps makes this area a refuge for the cats.

Hopefully the noise from the clunky Primos doesn't scare it off indefinitely.  I would like some better pics.


  1. That's great! Do you have "eastern" or "western" coyotes there? I don't know where the dividing line is (as if there's a "line"!).

    In my experience, without a food source around, coyotes are very skittish about cams at night. But, near those apple trees, I'd bet that you'd get coyotes and maybe even bears!

  2. Hey KB!

    I'm honestly not sure...but I *think* we have the western coyote here. The western part of the state is partially in the Great Plains.