Home Forums Campfire Forum Coyote on Deer

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    • David Coulter
      Post count: 2270

      Hi Guys,

      I just read a comment in another thread referring to coyotes and deer. Locally, I hear comments about how the increasing coyote populations is decimating the deer populations. Personally, I’m thinking that the drop in deer population had a lot more to do with the increase in doe tag availability and less with the coyotes. In the past few years, I’m seeing more coyote sign and the ones I actually see are pretty big. I’m also seeing more deer again and they are generally larger and healthier than they were ten years ago.

      So to the point… I’m interested in your views about the coyote-deer relationship. Seems to be a non-issue in my view, but that’s just one guy’s view.

      thanks, dwc

    • strait-aero
      Post count: 350

      Same here in eastern Ohio,David…..There are plenty of deer and I see coyotes several times per season.They sure aren’t hurting the deer population here. Wayne

    • Doc Nock
      Post count: 1150

      Dave, we don’t have the upsurge of coyotes down in mid-state to the point you have them, and even less here in the SE.

      However, from a totally armchair perspective, I’d have to say that yotes will hurt fawn survival… that is their specialty in all environs they inhabit… Out in MT it was cattle and sheep offspring that were targeted, but the stomach samples revealed deer, elk, etc.

      I think like adult diapers, it DEPENDS!

      On a lot of factors like concentrations, other prey species and sheer numbers of prey vs. predators, don’t ya think?

      Alas, doesn’t seem to be much to do about it. They’re pretty smart predators. It will mean that leaving a wounded deer overnight in cool weather will no longer be an option, so bring on the lights and eye protection for working the woods at night!

    • David Coulter
      Post count: 2270


      That does make sense. I also wondered that with healthier, bigger deer, does will be more likely than ever to have twins and even triplets. So there’s more left over for the coyote. dwc

    • Doc Nock
      Post count: 1150

      Yeah, lots of things “make sense” Dave, but any ideas I have are SWAG (Scientifie-Wild-Arse Guess)

      We can speculate all we want… but if the yodels kill fawns, the Mammas come thru spring and summer a lot fatter for not having to nurse and raise kiddos.

      When the Penn (Belefont) started letting people in to hunt deer and slaughtered everything in sight, the surrounding property I once hunted we saw the next year, twins with each doe…then for a few years, triplets were common…but yotes were very well established there…although I’m told more are showing up.

      Whatever speculation we make it’s just that…fun, but speculation.

      You and I have corresponded privately about how the PGC keeps insisting that all spikes are “late born fawns” but where I hunt(ed) we’d see those stair-step spikes from fawn size runts of the year, to honking big 140# dudes with 14″ bladed spikes…and those boys were passing on those genes.

      NO SOLUTION is applicable universally, but for a govt entity, it sure makes life easy… create the regs and then sit back and prop up one’s feet. We’ve bugged them to come do a tooth study on those big boys and see if they’re NOT 3 1/2 yr old spikes!

      So I’ve no real clue on deer #’s and yotes, but having trapped them in MT, and chased them, and knew ranchers who TRIED to eradicate them, they are pretty darned efficient predators! As such, they will take off the fawns and young first!

    • mhay
      Post count: 264

      I have witnessed on a few occasions a ‘yote trailing does in the spring . Not pushing the deer , just following , and in my opinion simply keeping tabs on a possible meal .

      I can’t recall the exact figure but the Division of Wildlife has done some extensive studies on the coyote here in Ohio and a substantial percentage of newborn whitetail are taken by the very adaptable ‘yote .

      Personally , I like the coyote . It’s a very interesting animal to study and hunt . Maybe this is because when I was young the biggest game we had to hunt was a fox. Then in the ’80’s the deer pop. exploded and soon appeared the ‘yotes. The wild turkey has come back by transplanting as well .

      I’d hate like h^*l to see any of them go the way of the Passenger Pidgeon.

      What has hurt the deer population the most in my immediate area is the farmers that get the nuisance permits and shoot does like some did the American Bison in the 19th century,but with less humane means . Gut shoot a soybean eater and it’ll run to the woods ,,,and die a miserable death .

    • David Coulter
      Post count: 2270

      When I go, I want to come back as a varmint. Seems like everything but a varmint can be hunted into extinction. Crows are tough, coyotes are tough, can’t get rid of roaches. Being a varmint is the life for me! dwc

    • David Petersen
      Post count: 2749
    • Col Mike
      Post count: 911


      Thanks I was wondering when you were going to post it:roll:


    • Ptaylor
      Post count: 579

      Well, I’m a “bottom-up” guy, i. e., ungulate populations are primarily the result of forage quality & quantity. predators do impact prey populations; they can keep a herd from rebounding after disease or drought, and in closed systems (islands) predators can and have extirpated the deer population. But if the habitat is healthy, then I think predators have a place in the system by eating deer so they don’t cycle into a boom-bust population growth.

      Also, purely aesthetically, I enjoy being in woods with large predators.

      That was a very interesting video Dave. Thanks for posting it.

    • jonking
      Post count: 14

      There was a time when I would spend quite a bit of time in the “off” season coyote hunting. I became a bit less serious about actually connecting with a coyote about the same time the trad bug bit me.

      I still spend a lot of time “coyote hunting”. Mostly because that is a simpler answer to the question of “what are you doing this weekend” than ” walking around in the cold for eight hours sometimes shooting my bow at sagebrush, sometimes just sitting and watching the world go by”.

      Lately, around my winter stomping grounds, I have been seeing lots deer, about the same number of elk as I am used to, but quite a bit fewer jack rabbits and coyotes than I have seen in the past. I have never figured that the coyotes affected the deer greatly. I did once see a big coyote chase a doe out of the brush but he didn’t connect, also saw a doe chase a fox out of the brush this year. I mostly assume they clean up on the sick and dying in the winter, and grab a few fawns in the spring.

    • strait-aero
      Post count: 350

      I’ve had coyotes come into my doe pee when I was in my blind.I nearly goat a shot.

      Then one time,early morning,a doe ran by me in my stand,and a few minutes later,a coyote ran in her track and stopped.Missed the shot….:roll:

    • archer38
      Post count: 242

      I grew up in Southern Ontario Canada. Prince Edward County, its actually an island on the North shore of Lake Ontario with the Bay of Quinte separating it from the shore along it’s North.

      In recent years,the coyote population has more than exploded.

      To say it has become a problem would be a huge understatement.

      Anyway, a family friend found a den site one day while out scouting for the coming deer season and he decided to set up a trail cam. He didn’t get back to it for about a month and when he did check it, what he found was astonishing !!

      Over the 30 plus days of trail cam photos, there were only 4 days that those coyotes did not bring back a deer to the den site with the vast majority of them being fawns. That’s right ! Almost a deer per day !!

      Keep in mind this is only one den site ! I hate to imagine how many times this is multiplied over the whole county !!

      This place, Prince Edward County, had no open season for deer for many years. As a youngster I can remember driving down a back road and seeing 40 or 50 deer or sometimes even more, raping a been field or any of the other crops available to them. In the 1980’s, a controlled numbers hunt was finally established in an attempt to manage the population.

      To put this “coyote problem” into perspective, deer numbers are so far down they are considering cancelling the deer season until numbers increase!

    • skinner biscuit
      Post count: 250

      The m44 dispenser is akin to a land mine.What if a little kid found one and started messing around with it out of curiosity.The fact that the agents carry the antidote speaks volumes.SCARY!

    • Ben M.
      Post count: 460

      I don’t have a whole lot to say on the subject, but do have one firsthand experience worth sharing.

      I killed a nice button buck this year and he had puncture scars on the right flank and on the top of the neck, just in front of the shoulders. The punctures on the neck were on both sides and were in an elongated semicircle shape–jaw shaped. The ones on the flank were in no discernible pattern (at least to me). The scars were in both the hide and the meat. I assume the injuries were caused by coyote(s), as they are the largest predator in this area (barring humans). I’ve killed plenty of deer with scars of all sorts but this was the first time I’ve seen an identifiable bite mark in one.


    • Ralph
      Post count: 2554

      skinner biscuit wrote: The m44 dispenser is akin to a land mine.What if a little kid found one and started messing around with it out of curiosity.The fact that the agents carry the antidote speaks volumes.SCARY!

      My aunt and uncle once owned 64,000 acres east of the hogback mountain, east of Aguilar, CO. They were sheep ranchers with probably a thousand head of sheep and a couple of hundred head of cattle. Needless to say they had quite the coyote population (also the ranch where I had many lessons in rattlesnake control). Getting back to M44, back in the old days it was very common to be used for coyote control. My uncle was a man of few words but he was good at making his point clear. He took my younger brother and I to one of his M44 “traps”. A coyote, an eagle, several other critters and one of his favorite sheep dogs lay scattered around dead. All he said was “Don’t #*@##* with those things”. Nuff said. This was before the time of protected eagles. Good thing because of other incidences. Predator’s a predator when it’s killing a man’s livelihood to a lot of people.

      Another thought, in the area where mom and dad lived, west of Mesa, CO., there are coyotes but more damage was done to livestock and fawn deer and elk by dog packs running than coyotes. Bet that’s so in some other areas also. Coyotes got a lot of unwarranted blame.

    • Ralph
      Post count: 2554

      P.S. on the above.

      In the canyon land on the east end of their place I saw some of the biggest mule deer bucks a person could wish to see. Some really interesting fossils and such too. Too bad I was only 10 or 11 years old at the time and about 15 or 16 when they sold out and moved to the Molina, CO. area. Could have been a really interesting place for this old man’s curious mind to still be roaming in. What is is what is though. 😀

      I cannot remember the name of that area of canyons out there but I believe there are bighorn sheep there now. I could research but busy now, like in another thread, seasons over, and I have a mess. 😆

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