Photo by Bob Gress
Total Length: 46-52 inches
Tail Length: 13-15 inches
Weight: 28-35 pounds
Coyotes are incredibly adaptable and are found in nearly all habitats of
North America. They live alone, in pairs or packs. Home ranges can be as large as 25
square miles. They are vocal and shortly after nightfall may howl to indicate their
location, claim their territory, reinforce social bonds or simply because they enjoy
howling. Pairs sometimes mate for life. Their den sites include cavities under rock
ledges, hollow logs, shrub thickets and dens abandoned by other mammals. They may use
several dens when rearing pups. Litters of 4-7 pups are born in spring. They can live up
to 10 years in the wild.
Coyotes range from South America through Alaska. They occupy all habitats in
Coyotes hunt from dusk to dawn for rabbits, mice, rats, squirrels and ground
nesting birds. They also eat plant matter, including fruits and berries. They will
scavenge dead livestock and kill poultry, small livestock, cats and small dogs.
- Urban Coyotes
- An excellent study of the natural history and behavior of urban coyotes in
the Chicago metropolitan area may be downloaded in pdf format by clicking here. (3 meg file)
Return to the Mammal's Den!
Text: George Potts and Bob Gress
Design: Jim Mason