They had to pull open the dividers in the big meeting room tonight at the library in order to accommodate the overflow crowd for a presentation called “The Eastern Coyote” by Scott Smith of the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation. Channel 8 was there with a video camera. Channel 10 showed up about halfway through the presentation. Peggi estimated a couple hundred people in the room.
We have 2 to 3 coyotes per square mile here, two times more than they have in the Adirondacks. There are 25,000 in New York State with the highest density in the Mohawk Valley. Of course Scott talked about coydogs, a cross between a coyote and you know. They have apparently been bred out in the colder northern climates but they are quite prevalent in the Carolinas.
I always thought wolf, coyotes and foxes would coexist as similar species but wolf eat coyotes and coyotes eat foxes and foxes eat rats, rabbits, chipmunks and so on down the line. Coyotes mate for life but fool around. Seventy per cent of their diet is deer but they don’t kill most of them, they are good at finding dead or injured deer.
An email had recently circulated among our neighbors, one that started with a women who spotted a deer head near her house when she was walking her dog. A deer hunter was the first to reply and he thought it could have been left by coyotes because they don’t like the head. Other neighbors chimed in with their recent coyote sightings.
Scott’s slides show all different colors of coyotes. I spotted what I thought was a red fox this morning. It was slinking through the trees in the woods across from our house. Stella, our eighteen year old, all white cat, was out while I grabbed the paper. I’m thinking the coyote got her. At least, I’d prefer to think that’s what happened to her. We had to have the vet put her down this afternoon because she had stopped eating.