How to Hunt Coyotes

Coyotes are worthy adversaries due to the fact they are very smart, not to mention the senses highlighted above.

Many hunters wait all year for hunting season in the fall.  Then, as soon as it is over, they put their rifle back in the closet to collect dust until the following year.  This may be because they do not know how to coyote hunt, or at least they do not know how much of a challenge and how fun it can be.  Here we will discuss tips and tactics on how to coyote hunt so you can increase the amount of days you are in the field.

What many do not realize is that hunting is actually a year round sport.  In most areas there is something that can be legally and ethically hunted throughout the year.  Coyote hunting can be done legally in most states, year round (check your local regulations), with only a hunting license required.  How to hunt coyotes is up to you as there are not many regulations surrounding coyote hunting.  Here are a few ways that we have found to be effective for hunting these deer killers.

Finding Areas to Coyote Hunt

Coyote Distribution

Coyotes can be found alomst anywhere in Noth America in abundant, huntable numbers.

There is no shortage of coyotes in North America.  They live in every state and every province in Canada, the USA, and Mexico.  There are few animals that are as adaptable as the coyote.  For this reason, there are no shortages of areas that can offer effective coyote hunting.  Many of the best areas are public land where it is just a matter of getting out and learning how to coyote hunt.  Other areas, particularly from the Midwest US and east, are mostly private land, so you will need to prepare for these coyote hunts by getting permission to hunt coyote hunt beforehand; don’t be afraid to knock on doors, most people will say yes, and the worse they can say is no.  Either way they are usually glad you asked.

Methods of How to Coyote Hunt

Predator Calls:

How to Coyote Hunt

The Author called in this beautiful coyote and made a good shot. Nice pelts like these can be worth up to $100 tanned.

Using calls is quite possibly the most effective way to hunt coyotes.  Coyotes rely on sound to determine where prey is all the time, and their sense of hearing is very good.  A coyote hunter will have to experiment with different calls to determine which sounds work best in the area, as all areas are different.  Animals in distress are a great place to start, especially rabbits squeals.  Other sounds that are becoming quite popular are coyote communication sounds such as howls.  You can do intimidation howls, female mating howls, and even pub in distress calls.  Coyotes are very social and curious, so you never know what they are going to come to.

What type of Calls Work Best: The best bet for beginners is to use an electronic predator call.  In fact, electronic calls are really best for even experienced callers, except many like the challenge of calling in coyotes with mouth calls.  To find the best calls both electronic and mouth calls in a wide array of price ranges, check here: Best Predators Calls for Coyote Hunting

Spot and Stalk/Shoot Coyote Hunting:

How to Coyote Hunt, Spot and Stalk

I spotted this big coyote from a long ways away, then used the lay of the land to get within 100 yards for the shot.

Another effective and fun way how to hunt coyotes is finding them first, and then shooting them.  The best weapons for this type of hunting are good spotting eyes, a flat shooting rifle, and a good shooter.

The first step is to find the dogs.  This method is best in open areas where you can see for long distances, but woodlands with fields are good to.  The object is to find them before they see you.  Many times you will be close enough to shoot when you first spot them, but others you will be required to stalk to within shooting distance. This is a very fun way how to coyote hunt as you rely on your spotting abilities to get the dogs and you get to see a lot of country as you are not waiting for the coyotes to come to you.

Road Hunting for Coyotes:

How to coyote hunt : Road Hunting

An evening hunt turned up these two coyotes running together not far off a rural road. 2 shots, 2 dogs. Be sure to get off the road before shooting.

One of the most comfortable ways how to coyote hunt is to drive around in areas that hold a lot of coyotes.  Again, this method of coyote hunting is best suited for open terrain where a coyote hunter can see a lot of country, but fields are also good areas to find coyotes.

Of all the methods on how to coyote hunt, road hunting will typically yield the most coyote spotting if conditions are right, granted you are able to spot them.  This is because you will be able to cover a lot of ground and see a lot of area.  Again, a good spotter is key when road hunting for coyotes as this can be the difference in seeing one or two run across the road or seeing double digit amounts where the average person would drive right by.  Most coyotes that live near roads are educated and know how to hide.  Likewise, they will not usually stick around long as they have been shot at before if they are not yearlings.  For this reason, even though you have the opportunity to see the most quantity of coyotes, the success ratio is not very good as they are often running.

Road Hunting Tip: Many times it works best to drive by a coyote until you are out of sight.  This will give you time to get ready and put a plan together.  It may be best to walk to get into position or drive back ready to roll.  Just remember, it is illegal to shoot from the road or a vehicle, so make sure you get out of the vehicle and off the road before you open fire.

Road hunting for coyotes and other predators is not looked down upon near as much as big game hunting.  That is because all coyote hunters know how fun it is to get out of the house and go for a drive and see what you can find.  The more you can get out, the better you will be at spotting these sneaky dogs.

Road hunting/spot and stalk/predator calling:

It is possible to incorporate multiple tactics or all tactics at the same time when hunting coyotes.  It is important to be able to do what you can when you can to increase your effectiveness when coyote hunting.  A great method is to drive around until you find a coyote(s) at a far distance.  The next thing you want to do is get out of site and then stalk closer to where you know the coyote can hear a call.  Get set up and let out the call.  More times than not, the coyote will come to investigate only to fall prey to a hunter that knows how to hunt coyotes.  Be sure to watch in all directions though, as you never know what direction another coyote or other predator will come from.  Even after you drop one, be patient as other coyotes might still come in, most animals hear gun shots on a daily basis, so are use to them; give it an extra 5 to 10 minutes after the shot.

Be Ready for other Predators

Calling in Predators

While targeting coyotes, this 30 lb bobcat came in to rabbit squeals from a FoxPro Electronic Caller. It was sold for $300!

When using prey animals in distress sounds it is not uncommon to have other predators come into the call.  The most likely animal that will come in besides Coyotes are bobcats and foxes, but do not be too surprised if a larger animal such as a Mountain Lion (click for a story about the time I was charged), bear, wolf, or wolverine if you are in areas that these animals call home.  Make sure these animals are legal to hunt and that you have the required licenses and permits.  It is hard when you have to let an animal go because you did not plan for the “what if” scenario.

Learning how to coyote hunt will open up many year-round hunting opportunities for a hunter that wants to spend more time in the field.  There are many tactics that can be employed to successfully hunt coyotes, but the most effective tactic is to use predator calls, electronic predator calls in particular.  To view the best electronic predator calls broke down by price range, click here: Best Electronic Varmint Calls for Hunting.  For more information on coyote hunting, other predator hunting, as well as big game hunting, go to http://www.BestforHunting.com


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