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Conservation & Politics Predators

Why Coyote Contests Are Good for Hunting

by Joseph von Benedikt   |  March 7th, 2014 30

When the long nights and winter snows have settled across North America and big-game seasons close one after another, predator hunting comes into its own. Fur is thick and glossy.

The coyote “rut” begins to kick in, making big dominant males easier to call. Deer are often snowbound and vulnerable, and weeding down a few coyote packs can help minimize predation overkill.

When the lack of sleep from big-game hunting wears off and cabin fever sets in, there’s no cure like pulling on snow camo and setting out to do your part to control winter predation.

About this time, coyote calling and hunting contests across the nation also kick in, generating a lot of excitement and some resentment. Passionate predator hunters test their skills and attempt to augment their incomes, often traveling across state lines to compete. Locals either welcome contestants as beneficial to the local wildlife and livestock or resent them as “professionals” that ruin regional hunting.

Which is the truth? And what are the tangible effects on coyote populations?

Asking the Experts
Though I own enough predator calls to outfit every kid in the congregation with one during the local church dinner party, I don’t consider myself an expert on the subject. In order to more accurately analyze the above topics, I enlisted the help of three individuals more fluent in the coyote language than I’ll ever be.

Jason Wagner is a biologist and passionate predator hunter in Texas, and Cory Lundberg and Scott Grange are coyote-hunting nutcases from my home state of Utah that hunt across the Western states and anywhere else they happen to be. I hit each of them with questions formulated to explore the subject.

Interestingly, each of them agrees wholeheartedly with the practice of coyote hunting competitions—though not all enter such competitions on a regular basis.

As Grange put it, “Let’s face it, the only truly effective way to knock coyote numbers down is with poison, and this method was outlawed years ago. Whether it’s a competition or a $50 bounty, as is the case in Utah, bring it on. We need more!”

Furthermore, as Wagner pointed out, many contests benefit college scholarships, 4-H clubs, and other organizations.

Despite the benefits, there is pushback—primarily political. Some from locals who think that such contests ruin their hunting spots, but more from animal rights groups, such as Project Coyote, an organization whose logo touts “fostering coexistence.” Such groups coordinate protests, anti-contest petition signature collection efforts, and so on.

For instance, Project Coyote led a statewide campaign against northeastern California’s annual “Coyote Drive” contest in February of last year, prompting almost two-dozen conservation groups to write protest letters to state and federal wildlife management agencies in an attempt to stop the contest.

The protest was unsuccessful. Massive local and national support of the contest arose in response to the anti-hunting propaganda. That, coupled with the fact that the event was in accordance with all California Fish and Wildlife regulations, led to a triumph for supporters of the annual event.

The popularity of coyote hunting contests and predator hunting in general is burgeoning. Aptly put by Grange, “…predator hunting has become a very popular way to extend hunting season and in some cases provide a little cash in the wallet for those who love being in the field rather than in front of the television.”

Some areas in states like Texas may host multiple contests every weekend once the big-game seasons draw to a close.

There’s also been a big increase in industry involvement.

“As predator and varmint hunting is the fastest growing portion of the hunting industry, naturally companies are introducing purpose-built products,” Lundberg said.

In particular, electronic calling equipment is advancing in leaps and bounds, enabling neophyte callers to successfully lure in coyotes. As Wagner put it, “Just about anyone can go out and call in a predator.” But he also pointed out that the screw-ups common with inexperienced callers can educate predators and make them harder to call.

“That’s why I have some sounds that I don’t use much,” he said. “But when I do, a coyote will usually come in.”

How about the effect of contests on coyote populations? Science and practical experience both indicate that it’s minimal. According to Lundberg, who studied at Utah State University, the institution’s Coyote Research Facility has proven it.

He adds, “My team and I once shot 24 coyotes over a 2½-day period in October, 18 over a 2½-day period in November; and 31 over a a 2 ½-day period in December—setting up and calling in exactly the same spots every time. This wasn’t during contests—my point is that if an area will support a lot of coyotes it will always hold a lot of coyotes.”

Final Call
For the most part, passionate predator hunters are in favor of coyote contests. Long-term effects on predator populations are minimal (though in my own admittedly biased opinion, putting even a temporary dent in a local population can benefit a struggling deer demographic). Manufacturers are offering premium, dedicated predator-hunting equipment and more advanced electronic calls every year, helping beginners succeed.

Are there downsides? Not really. So detach your posterior from the sofa, tune up the varmint rifle, and get out into the snow and cold for a little winter wonderland hunting. If you’ve got the cajones, enter a contest and test your skills. But keep it fun, keep it honest, and don’t take yourself more seriously than the well being of the sport.

  • budpg

    Face it- you guys are SLOBS. You have no clue about animal ecology…..Show me where in the NAMWC does it say that coyote calling and coyote killing contests are approved of….You can’t…..We are coming for your heritage…make no mistake…and you will have no one to blame but yourselves….LOSERS!!!!!!

  • Thomas Kane

    Wow…you call this hunting. Sorry this is slaughter. Killing contests and killing wild animals for fun is ecologically indefensible as well as repugnant behavior. and please stay off public lands, public sentiment is against killing contests and killing animals for fun! I don’t want you on our public lands killing everything in your path and neither do other humane concerned citizens that don’t see these activities as anything but disgraceful..

    • john

      Read the article,coyote hunting good,anti-hunting bad,GET OVER IT.

  • Thomas Kane

    For those of you here who may be interested in a true take on predator killing please read this taken from the Wildlife News.

    Whither the Hunter/Conservationist?

    by GEORGE WUERTHNER on MARCH 5, 2014 · 206 COMMENTS · in ACTIVISM, CONSERVATION,DELISTING, ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT, GREAT LAKES WOLVES, IDAHO, IDAHO WOLVES,MONTANA, MONTANA WOLVES, WILDLIFE, WILDLIFE SERVICES, WISCONSIN WOLVES, WOLVES AND PREY, WYOMING, WYOMING WOLVES

    Many hunter organizations like to promote the idea that hunters were the first and most important conservation advocates. They rest on their laurels of early hunter/wildlife activist like Teddy Roosevelt, and George Bird Grinnell who, among other things, were founding members of the Boone and Crocket Club. But in addition to being hunter advocates, these men were also staunch proponents of national parks and other areas off limits to hunting. Teddy Roosevelt help to establish the first wildlife refuges to protect birds from feather hunters, and he was instrumental in the creation of numerous national parks including the Grand Canyon. Grinnell was equally active in promoting the creation of national parks like Glacier as well as a staunch advocate for protection of wildlife in places like Yellowstone. Other later hunter/wildlands advocates like Aldo Leopold and Olaus Murie helped to promote wilderness designation and a land ethic as well as a more enlightened attitude about predators.

    Unfortunately, though there are definitely still hunters and anglers who put conservation and wildlands protection ahead of their own recreational pursuits, far more of the hunter/angler community is increasingly hostile to wildlife protection and wildlands advocacy. Perhaps the majority of hunters were always this way, but at least the philosophical leaders in the past were well known advocates of wildlands and wildlife.

    Nowhere is this change in attitude among hunter organizations and leadership more evident than the deafening silence of hunters when it comes to predator management. Throughout the West, state wildlife agencies are increasing their war on predators with the apparent blessings of hunters, without a discouraging word from any identified hunter organization. Rather the charge for killing predators is being led by groups like the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, and others who are not only lobbying for more predator killing, but providing funding for such activities to state wildlife agencies.

    For instance, in Nebraska which has a fledging population of cougars (an estimated 20) the state wildlife agency has already embarked on a hunting season to “control” cougar numbers. Similarly in South Dakota, where there are no more than 170 cougars, the state has adopted very aggressive and liberal hunting regulations to reduce the state’s cougar population.

    But the worst examples of an almost maniacal persecution of predators are related to wolf policies throughout the country. In Alaska, always known for its Neanderthal predator policies, the state continues to promote killing of wolves adjacent to national parks. Just this week the state wiped out a pack of eleven wolves that were part of a long term research project in the Yukon Charley National Preserve. Alaska also regularly shoots wolves from the air, and also sometimes includes grizzly and black bears in its predator slaughter programs.

    In the lower 48 states since wolves were delisted from the federal Endangered Species Act and management was turned over to the state wildlife agencies more than 2700 wolves have been killed.

    This does not include the 3435 additional wolves killed in the past ten years by Wildlife Services, a federal predator control agency, in both the Rockies and Midwest. Most of this killing was done while wolves were listed as endangered.

    As an example of the persecutory mentality of state wildlife agencies, one need not look any further than Idaho, where hunters/trappers, along with federal and state agencies killed 67 wolves this past year in the Lolo Pass area on the Montana/Idaho border, including some 23 from a Wildlife Service’s helicopter gun ship. The goal of the predator persecution program is to reduce predation on elk. However, even the agency’s own analysis shows that the major factor in elk number decline has been habitat quality declines due to forest recovery after major wildfires which has reduced the availability of shrubs and grasses central to elk diet. In other word, with or without predators the Lolo Pass area would not be supporting the number of elk that the area once supported after the fires. Idaho also hired a trapper to kill wolves in the Frank Church/River of No Return Wilderness to increase elk numbers there.

    Idaho hunters are permitted to obtain five hunting and five trapping tags a year, and few parts of the state have any quota or limits. Idaho Governor Butch Otter recently outlined a new state budget allotting $2 million dollars for the killing of wolves—even though the same budget cuts funding for state schools.

    Other states are no better than Idaho. Montana has a generous wolf six month long season. Recent legislation in the Montana legislature increased the number of wolves a hunter can kill to five and allows for the use of electronic predator calls and removes any requirement to wear hunter orange outside of the regular elk and deer seasons. And lest you think that only right wing Republican politicians’ support more killing, this legislation was not opposed by one Democratic Montana legislator, and it was signed into law by Democratic Governor Steve Bullock because he said Montana Dept of Fish, Wildlife and Parks supported the bill.

    Wyoming has wolves listed as a predator with no closed season or limit nor even a requirement for a license outside of a “trophy” wolf zone in Northwest Wyoming.

    The Rocky Mountain West is known for its backward politics and lack of ethics when it comes to hunting, but even more “progressive” states like Minnesota and Wisconsin have cow-towed to the hunter anti predator hostility. Minnesota allows the use of snares, traps, and other barbaric methods to capture and kill wolves. At the end of the first trapping/hunting season in 2012/2013, the state’s hunters had killed more than 400 wolves.

    Though wolves are the target species that gets the most attention, nearly all states have rabid attitudes towards predators in general. So in the eastern United States where wolves are still absent, state wildlife agencies aggressively allow the killing of coyotes, bears and other predators. For instance, Vermont, a state that in my view has undeserved reputation for progressive policies, coyotes can be killed throughout the year without any limits.

    These policies are promoted for a very small segment of society. About six percent of Americans hunt, yet state wildlife agencies routinely ignore the desires of the non-hunting public. Hunting is permitted on a majority of US Public lands including 50% of wildlife “refuges as well as nearly all national forests, all Bureau of Land Management lands, and even a few national parks. In other words, the hunting minority dominates public lands wildlife policies.

    Most state agencies have a mandate to manage wildlife as a public trust for all citizens, yet they clearly serve only a small minority. Part of this is tradition, hunters and anglers have controlled state wildlife management for decades. Part of it is that most funding for these state agencies comes from the sale of licenses and tags. And part is the worldview that dominates these agencies which sees their role as “managers” of wildlife, and in their view, improving upon nature.

    None of these states manage predators for their ecological role in ecosystem health. Despite a growing evidence that top predators are critical to maintaining ecosystem function due to their influence upon prey behavior, distribution and numbers, I know of no state that even recognizes this ecological role, much less expends much effort to educate hunters and the public about it. (I hasten to add that many of the biologists working for these state agencies, particularly those with an expertise about predators, do not necessarily support the predator killing policies and are equally appalled and dismayed as I am by their agency practices.)

    Worse yet for predators, there is new research that suggests that killing predators actually can increase conflicts between humans and these species. One cougar study in Washington has documented that as predator populations were declining, complaints rose. There are good reasons for this observation. Hunting and trapping is indiscriminate. These activities remove many animals from the population which are adjusted to the human presence and avoid, for instance, preying on livestock. But hunting and trapping not only opens up productive territories to animals who may not be familiar with the local prey distribution thus more likely to attack livestock, but hunting/trapping tends to skew predator populations to younger age classes. Younger animals are less skillful at capturing prey, and again more likely to attack livestock. A population of young animals can also result in larger litter size and survival requiring more food to feed hungry growing youngsters—and may even lead to an increase in predation on wild prey—having the exact opposite effect that hunters desire.

    Yet these findings are routinely ignored by state wildlife agencies. For instance, despite the fact that elk numbers in Montana have risen from 89,000 animals in 1992 several years before wolf reintroductions to an estimated 140,000-150,000 animals today, Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks does almost nothing to counter the impression and regular misinformation put forth by hunter advocacy groups like the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation or the Montana Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife that wolves are “destroying” Montana’s elk herds.

    I have attended public hearings on wolves and other predator issues, and I have yet to see a single hunter group support less carnivore killing. So where are the conservation hunters? Why are they so silent in the face of outrage? Where is the courage to stand up and say current state wildlife agencies policies are a throw-back to the last century and do not represent anything approaching a modern understanding of the important role of predators in our ecosystems?

    As I watch state after state adopting archaic policies, I am convinced that state agencies are incapable of managing predators as a legitimate and valued member of the ecological community. Their persecutory policies reflect an unethical and out of date attitude that is not in keeping with modern scientific understanding of the important role that predators play in our world.

    It is apparent from evidence across the country that state wildlife agencies are incapable of managing predators for ecosystem health or even with apparent ethical considerations. Bowing to the pressure from many hunter organizations and individual hunters, state wildlife agencies have become killing machines and predator killing advocates.

    Most people at least tolerant the killing of animals that eaten for food, though almost everyone believes that unnecessary suffering should be avoided. But few people actually eat the predators they kill, and often the animals are merely killed and left on the killing fields. Yet though many state agencies and some hunter organizations promote the idea that wanton waste of wildlife and unnecessary killing and suffering of animals is ethically wrong, they conveniently ignore such ideas when it comes to predators, allowing them to be wounded and left to die in the field, as well as permitted to suffer in traps. Is this ethical treatment of wildlife? I think not.

    Unfortunately unless conservation minded hunters speak up, these state agencies as well as federal agencies like Wildlife Services will continue their killing agenda uninhibited. I’m waiting for the next generation of Teddy Roosevelts, Aldo Leopolds and Olaus Muries to come out of the wood work. Unless they do, I’m afraid that ignorance and intolerant attitudes will prevail and our lands and the predators that are an important part of the evolutionary processes that created our wildlife heritage will continue to be eroded.

  • Keli Hendricks

    OK, so we all finally admit that the killing of coyotes does nothing to lower their overall numbers, or increase deer populations, yet hunters still endorse these barbaric killing contests
    Why, you ask? For fun of course!
    In fact, the author encourages others to join in the action by questioning whether they have “the cojones enter a contest and test your skills.”
    Exactly what cojones does it takes to don camouflage and lure in an unsuspecting, half starved, coyote with an electronic caller until it is close enough to be blown to bits with a high powered rifle and scope?
    The only thing ballsy about this ‘sport’ is the suggestion that it takes balls.
    Killing to defend one’s life, or feed one’s self, can usually be justified. But killing for fun is morally indefensible.
    Funny how the very same folks that kill coyotes for fun are often the ones that paint coyotes as evil for killing to survive.
    I have seen a lot of coyotes and I have yet to see a fat one. On the other hand, I’ve seen a lot of hunters and they all appear very well fed.
    Huh. I wonder who needs that deer meat more?

    • GRIZZ

      YOUR WRONG ONCE MORE

      • Keli Hendricks

        You mean, YOU’RE wrong once more.

  • budpg

    I’m afraid these few comments of sanity will fall on deaf ears. After all, predator haters/ hunters are cowards….the arrogance and stupidity is facinating. Wearing camo and using the latest technology does not make a person a hunter…..the day is coming where these idiots who masquarade as sportsmen will be stopped…..

    • Gary H

      You call this hunting! This reminds me of bear hunters who tree bears with dogs, walk up to the tree and shoot the bear. This gives hunting a bad name. Hunters use their personal knowledge, skills and abilities and know the importance that predators provide on the landscape. Look in the mirror and stop this madness.

      • Steven Childs

        Ignorant comments. Hunting with dogs helps hunters cull specific animals instead of targeting random animals that pass by their stand. I do not hunt with dogs nor do I ever plan on doing it but I can see the value in being able to target specific animals and leave the non desirable animals to live another day.

  • budpg

    http://thoughtsfromthewildside.blogspot.com/2014/03/killing-wolves-hunter-led-war-against.html?m=1Joseph Von Benedikt enlisted the help of some experts that he calls coyote hunting nutcases…..Finally- we agree on something…Thanks for the misinformation Von Benedikt. This has nothing to do with “weeding down a few coyote packs and help minimize predation on deer herds” Hunters are a paranoid lot- and they just feel that all the wild game belongs to them…..

  • palominogal

    Hunters are crazy people. They all think they’re out there doing god’s work and that they’re slaughtering animals — MY wildlife, by the way—for the animals’ own good. These sterling human beings have no conscience about what they’re doing, no concept that what they’re doing wreaks more harm than good. They’re all narcissists guided by some cockamamie notion guided “from above” that it’s not only their RIGHT to massacre, but their DUTY. Every single hunter out there needs extensive, intensive therapy.

    • Kevin

      Although I find these contests appalling, you are very, very wrong, and judgmental. I personally do not hunt, but the idea of being responsible and knowing where your food comes from is way more sane than buying meat at the local grocery store or fast food restaurant. Stop being ignorant about hunting, but yeah, coyote contests are 100% stupid.

  • altgirl35

    Hunting coyotes does NOTHING to lower the population!
    The science is proven!
    In fact it increases their numbers!
    Complete idiots who know nothing of coyotes natural history.
    When a pack is strong it has a larger territory, they have less pups, when you kill the dominant male or female you weaken the pack, therefor you have many weakened packs in smaller territories and they increase their litter to make up for the losses, such stupid dolts!
    They keep deer herds ( and other prey species) healthy by taking the sick and weak unlike hunters who want the biggest, healthiest, strongest buck they can get!
    Hunters idea of population control is what has screwed everything all up, and is harmful to the natural world!!

    • grizz

      i guess when they starve to death when they eat all there food in the area thats ok then. oh yeah they could go KILL your dogs and cats when they run out of food because theres to many of them.witch is whats happening in my home town and lots of other towns and cites

      • Keli Hendricks

        They won’t kill any responsible owners pets because they know to have pets in between dusk and dawn, have yards secured and properly fenced with attractants removed. These simple steps will prevent almost all coyote attacks on domestic pets. And if it so happens that it doesn’t, well since we know that indiscriminate killing only creates more problems, I will take it like a mature adult and figure out what i can do to prevent further attacks. What I won’t do, is blame and target an entire species and paint them as evil for trying to survive.

        • Steven Childs

          Although I agree with your first part, nobody is painting coyotes as evil, that is something you have envisioned.

          Speak about what you know and stop speculating on people and activities you know nothing about.

          • Keli Hendricks

            While we all should be grateful that someone like Steven Childs is around to tell us of what we should or shouldn’t ‘speculate’ on, in his very next sentence he goes on to speculate about how much I (someone he has never met) know about coyotes.
            While I don’t consider myself an expert, I have spent a lifetime working with animals, both wild and domestic. I have a degree in animal science and spent many years as a professional horse trainer.
            My husband and I live and work on a cattle ranch where we run 300 head of mother cows using predator friendly ranching methods. I volunteer at the local wildlife rescue where I work hands on rehabilitating coyotes and other native wildlife. I am also on the board of directors of a horse rescue and serve on the advisory board of Project Coyote, an organization that boasts a science advisory board that is made up of some of the top wild canid researchers in the country.
            So while I may not be an expert, I’m smart enough to surround myself with experts and learn from them, and I’m certainly qualified enough to offer my opinion on the effectiveness of lethal control methods on coyote populations.
            Luckily, I don’t need Steven Childs to approve of my message in order for me to continue to share it. And I doubt anyone else does either.

          • Steven Childs

            You seem like a nice person but I really take issue with a group like project coyote. They twist facts to suit their agenda.

            I say their panel consists primarily of activist scientists. I am not a canid specialist but somehow it wasn’t so difficult to find information that contradicts PC’s claims. Why is that? That alone demonstrates PC’s bias against hunting by ignoring the science they don’t agree with.

            Keli, although it is not palatable to a lot of the people making these comments here, hunting serves a need in conservation.

            Just because I have different views doesn’t mean I’m wrong.

          • Keli Hendricks

            It is the ultimate conceit of man to believe we can manage nature better than it can manage itself. No matter how badly humans screw things up, there are those who see the problems we created as evidence that nature needs even more of our ‘help’.
            The truth is, all that nature requires from us is our respect, humility and the wisdom to ‘first do no harm’.

          • Steven Childs

            I don’t think hunters believe they’re the ones who can manage mother nature alone. There are too many programs to support and improve habitat and natural resources sponsored by sportsman to list here. I’ve donated more time and money to help than I care to admit.

            I believe you’ve confused you’re mantra “to do no harm” with the Hippocratic oath.

            Aren’t you a cattle rancher? Doesn’t that mean you’re exploiting the land and natural resources for your own personal gain?

            Thank you for raising cattle in an ethical eco friendly way but it makes your statement to “do no harm” look hypocritical.

            Open your heart and your mind and learn that everyone including nature can benefit when all stakeholders come to the table.

            Project Coyote is an activist group with the goal to end all hunting. They twist the truth and lie to push their cause. WTF? Disgraceful!

          • Keli Hendricks

            What about all those millions of dollars that hunting raises for conservation? That seems impressive. Well, it turns out what’s more impressive is the fact that anti hunters (16 percent of US pop) outnumber hunters (3 percent of US Pop) 3 to 1. Non consumptive wildlife viewing activities (hiking, bird watching, photography, camping, etc) bring in Billions of dollars of revenue through parking passes, park fees and so on. In fact these activities generate ten times the revenue that hunting does.
            Then there is the other small problem with the ‘conservation’ that is being done with the monies raised through sportsman’s fees. They are generally used to artificially bolster the populations of game species for hunters. This is done by the lethal removal of predators, and restoring habitats in ways that benefit these particular species, as opposed to all wildlife.
            Hunters love calling themselves the true conservationists, but not surprisingly, this self serving claim doesn’t hold much water.
            And yes I am a rancher and I working to show other ranchers that wildlife and livestock can coexist peacefully to the benefit of all. I travel to Fish and Wildlife meetings to speak out against cattlemen’s associations, farm bureaus, and the Dept of Wildlife Services etc when I feel like wildlife is getting a raw deal in order to benefit ranching interests, which is often.
            To be clear, I have nothing against hunting when it is done with some reverence and respect for nature. Few people would object to ranching or hunting if they were done with respect and some humility. Trophy hunting, killing contests and killing what you cannot eat, is the wanton waste of wildlife, and the hunting industries defense of these activities only serves to make all hunters look like a-holes.
            79 percent of the US pop neither hunts nor is anti hunting, but with ethical hunting becoming more and more of an oxymoron, the percentage of anti- hunters is sure to grow.
            And finally, I didn’t confuse the Hippocratic Oath with anything. I was simply applying the philosophy to another activity.
            I thought that was pretty clear, or else I would have spelled it out.

      • altgirl35

        If they over populate it’s because your killing alphas!
        They control larger territories and have less pups if the pack is strong!
        Kitty and small dogs shouldn’t be left outside alone, and they don’t take them because they are starving, they take them because it’s easy food.

        • Steven Childs

          To altgirl35… Its clear you are one sided on this issue. Try reading my post above. Just because scientists and biologists back activist groups like Project Coyote, doesn’t mean they aren’t biased pushing an agenda.

          • altgirl35

            That’s where your WRONG science is based on facts and proof!
            Not to sell hunting permits, not to sell hunting gear, or hunting magazines or to turn a buck selling pelts

  • palominogal

    Freud long ago alluded to the fact that hunters (who are virtually all male) and those of their ilk are by and large sexually conflicted/repressed, which is why they have to “overkill” to establish and “prove” their manhood. It’s not all that b-s about ‘love of the outdoors’ and ‘love of nature’ that sends them on their wildlife demolition missions. Nope. Their manhood is suspect, they know it, and they’re deathly afraid of being “found out.”
    Right on, Sigmund!

  • BoldChapeau

    Not all humans are monsters, but all monsters are human. The author and his ilk are prime examples.

  • Kevin

    You obviously haven’t done enough research. Coyotes regulate their litters. More coyotes, equals less food, equals smaller litters. Less coyotes, equals more food, equals bigger litters.

    One funny thing you brought up in your little article is this, “How about the effect of contests on coyote populations? Science and practical experience both indicate that it’s minimal.”

    This proves the point I just made. you’re actually probably getting more in return. You also stated, “weeding down a few coyote packs can help minimize predation overkill.” Umm…. you just contradicted yourself.

    Lastly, since when have deer numbers been dropping? Last time I checked deer are way overabundant.

    Next time do some more research. Go hunt for sustenance. That’s fine, but killing contests? Really? Cowardly!

  • flower

    you people are the truest form of disgrace.

  • Steven Childs

    What a surprise, anti-hunters spewing their ignorance. Using the same rhetoric “ecologically indefensible” and “hunting increases coyote populations.” If you actually read up on these subjects you’d know you were wrong.

    Multiple studies point to the fact that Wildlife management would be severely weakened, in terms of economic and social support without hunting. Although nonhunting environmental interests have supported alternative funding
    sources such as the failed Teaming With Wildlife legislation or CARA, opposition to new taxes within Congress and the executive branch have proven difficult to overcome. Even if CARA or a similar act became the premier wildlife management funding source by funneling nearly $1 billion a year into conservation it still would come up shockingly short to fund conservation needs (Dizard 2003).

    Several studies also contradict the claim that “hunting increases coyote populations.” Another twist of the facts. It is commonly known that the alpha pair control mating in a group of coyotes. If either member fall prey to a hunter (or anything else) it would give opportunities for the lesser animals to breed. However, pack size is determined by available natural resources such as suitable habitat and food sources. Removing lesser animals (non alpha) from a group does nothing in terms of increasing the local population since lesser animals usually don’t breed or when they do it is usually with transient animal(s) found during the dispersion period.

    How many of you activists understand the coyote for the most part in the United States is a non native, invasive species? Coyotes (Canis latrans) are one of the least specialized, most primitive living members of their genus (Nowak 1978). As such, they have adapted to diverse environments throughout North America (Bekoff 1982). Coyotes were originally confined to the great plains, but now inhabit all of North America, and are being seen in areas as far south as the Yucatan peninsula, Mexico (Gier 1975, Nowak 1978, Sosa-Escalante et al. 1997).

    By the way, I challenge any of you ignorant to hunting to go grab a camera and a call and see how easy this is (its not) and see how many coyotes there actually are. I understand how you don’t like it but more of the public land you think is yours has been supported and created by revenue generated from hunting and fishing.

    By the way, please feel free to use public land anytime you want, it is all of ours to SHARE. Hypocrites!

    Please explain why people who do not hunt are so upset at people who do?

    No one is forcing or asking you to hunt or participate in hunting contests. So why are so many upset? Last time I checked this was a free country and if science shows the activity is in line with wildlife management why do you have to throw stones?

    I laugh at all of this judgment being passed down by internet bullies.

    By the way Kevin, no knock but deer numbers are all over the map all over this country. One place is overrun and others are in decline.

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