New genetic tests show that all eastern coyotes are a mix of three species: coyote, wolf and dog. The percentages vary, dependent upon exactly which test is applied and the geographic location of the canine. The hybridization likely first occurred in the Great Lakes region, as western coyotes moved east. It was first noticed during the early 1930s to the late 1940s, and likely originated in the aftermath of the extirpation of the gray wolf in southeastern Ontario, Labrador, and Quebec, thus allowing coyotes to colonize the former wolf ranges, and mix with the remnant wolf populations. This hybrid is smaller than the eastern wolf and holds smaller territories but is larger and holds more extensive home ranges than the typical western coyote. Eastern coyotes are also generally larger in size than their western counterparts.
Coyotes are attracted by bread, table scraps, seed, or even birds that come to the feeder. Secure garbage containers and try to eliminate garbage odors. Don’t leave small children unattended outside if coyotes have been seen frequently in the area. Coyotes rarely attack people and almost always do so as a result of feeling threatened, but you still shouldn’t leave small children unattended outside if coyotes have been seen frequently in the area. You also should allow pets to run free. Coyotes are attracted by bread, table scraps, seed, or even birds that come to the feeder. Secure garbage containers and eliminate garbage odors.
9 Fun Facts About Coyotes
Why Coyotes Yip at Night
Coyotes yip at night for several reasons. One is to call the pack—really a family group—back together again after a period of individual hunting. A second reason that coyotes howl is to advertise their presence to other packs, essentially warning those other family groups against trespassing across territorial boundaries.”
Coyotes can Jump
Coyotes have been known to jump over six-foot fences. They have also have very strong back legs and have been observed climbing fences seven feet tall.
They are Fast
The top speed for a coyote is 35 – 43 mph when they are in pursuit or fleeing danger, or at approximately the same pace as a racing greyhound.
Coyotes Provide Great Pest Control
The coyote is an expert hunter of rodents and rabbits, which makes it a helpful species for pest control and help keep mouse, rabbit groundhog, and gopher populations at bay.
They Are Omnivores
Coyotes don’t just stick to rodents and birds for prey. They are omnivores that will happily feast on ripe berries, vegetables, fallen fruit, and other healthy goodies.
They Mate for Life
Coyotes mate for life and are monogamous. This remains true regardless of the number of other potential mates in the area. If the male dies, the female coyote will likely leave the area immediately or soon after any pups are independent.
They Make 11 Different Noises
Researchers have identified 11 different vocalizations: growl, huff, woof, bark, bark-howl, lone howl, group yip-howl, whine, group howl, greeting songs, yelps. They use these vocalizations to communicate with others in their family group or pack and communicate territory to animals outside the pack. A pair of coyotes can easily sound like a larger group due to the variety of vocalizations.
They Adapt Well to City Life
Coyotes frequently dwell right under human noses in suburbs and cities. Researchers are finding that urban coyotes exhibit different behaviors than suburban and rural coyotes. They are less shy and more likely to eat cats and human-made food than their rural cousins. They also eat ornamental fruits and seeds from human planted non-native species, such as figs, palms, and grapes.
They Parent Together
Coyotes raise their young as a couple or within a larger pack. Litters of pups can range from a single offspring to as many as 19. The size of the litter depends on food and other resources available to the coyotes. Pups normally stay with parents for the first six to nine months, and female pups may remain with their original family group for life.