Coyote Hunting Tips
If you want to increase your coyote yield this season you just might have to alter your hunting style. Add these strategies to your techniques and your predator hunting results will be more successful.
Tip #1 Take advantage of an electronic caller. Place the speaker downrange and upwind of your location, you divert the attention of the predator away from you. E-callers allow you to focus the attention of coyotes away from your location as well as to allow you to manage the calls using a remote. You can turn the caller on and off, increase the volume and switch calls in the middle of a stand to turn a reluctant coyote into a comer.
Tip #2 Use elevation to improve sight distance and concealment. With even a little elevation, calls go farther covering more area. You will be able to see animals coming a long ways out and be set up ready for a shot before the predator gets in range. Dressed in full camo, blending in with rocks, brush, and trees, you will not be seen if you use your head and only move when it’s time to take the shot.
Tip #3 Start your calling off with low volume as to not scare off any close-by predators. Don’t be afraid to turn up the volume after 10 minutes or so into your sequence to start reaching out long distance and covering some ground.
Tip #4 You most defiantly want to hunt with the wind in your favor. A coyote’s nose is it’s best line of defense and often times will try to circle downwind of your calling to confirm with it’s nose what it’s ears are telling them. Hunting a cross wind is a great way to beat the predators awesome sense of smell.
Tip #5 Be patient, I will usually hunt a set for a good 30-40 minutes in some areas. Pressured song dogs move slower and with more caution. Remember they are trying to confirm with their nose and eyes what their ears are telling them. 15-20 minute stands may work in some places but you will be surprised how many coyote come in after 30 minutes.
Tip #6 Use a combination of your electronic caller and hand calls. Sometimes different sounds coming from two locations seem to confuse the coyote just enough for them to throw caution to the wind and come charging in.
Tip #7 I typically set my E-caller about 30 – 50 yards out from my stand location facing in the direction I expect the predator to come in. Adding a decoy gives the set a visual attractor that can excite a wily coyote into running in for a quick shot opportunity.
Tip #8 Try to avoid hunting windy days but if that is your only option set up in dense cover and avoid hunting fields. A coyote most likely will not come out in the middle of a field when hearing and sense of smell are diminished from strong winds. Predators are reluctant to hunt on rainy days for the same reasons but when the weather clears, predators go hunting making up for lost time and being hungry. Clear days after heavy rains produce increased predator hunting activity. Take advantage of this by hunting at first light and all day long to increase your success.
Tip #9 When a coyote suddenly appears and is moving, can make for a tough shot. A loud mouth made “bark” usually will stop a moving coyote for the shot opportunity you need. Continue calling after the shot whether you connect or not. You may get a shot at one animal and not see another coming in at a different angle. Coyote often travel in pairs. After taking the shot, call for at least another five minutes if not more.
Tip #10 What sound should you play? There are so many factors that go into this selection. Time of year, time of day, can all play a factor. Here are just a few guidelines based on season when to make which type of predator calling sound when coyote hunting. Of course don’t ever be afraid to change things up.
Spring – In March and April the coyote pairs have established a den. Predator callers should be thinking coyote vocalizations at the beginning of the spring as the females are ready to give birth and the males will be in protection mode. The pair also will be defending their territory from other coyotes, making coyote vocalizations the go-to call early. Later in the spring, after the pups are born the male will be searching hard for food and there’s plenty around, so a prey-in-distress comes back into the fold.
Summer – Prey-in-distress calls work best throughout summer in many areas. The pups are growing and both parents are now hunting pretty much full time again. Think cottontails, bird distress calls and fawn distress calls for best results. Another good option is to end your sequence with pup in distress to get the mother instincts going.
Fall – In late October and into November, the family group breaks down and the pups head out on their own. Early in the fall when many hunters are focusing on other species, the prey-in-distress calls continue to work very well. There are plenty of young, never been called pups roaming around learning the ropes who are willing to run right into a prey-in-distress sound. This is a great time to use young coyote vocalizations mixed with some lone howls while using prey in distress calls.
Winter – In December through the first half of January, most coyotes have now established a territory. Winter has hit with full force, and keeping food in its belly is priority number one for a coyote. Hunting pressure is extremely high, and the prey in distress calls work well.
During the last half of January and February, the remaining coyote population turns its focus to breeding. Mating is now the priority, with the females starting to come into heat it is a good time to use coyote vocalizations such as female whimpers. Food sources are dwindling, and the coyotes must continue to hunt on a daily basis. Hunting pressure remains high, and many of the remaining coyotes have had some sort of educational experience during the previous four months so it is good to use coyote vocals mixed in with prey in distress calls.
Utilize these predator hunting tips and you will have more success in the field.
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