One of the best ways of writing a beautiful coyote book is by first enlightening readers of the scientific name of coyotes which is Canis latrans. Coyotes are believed to have originated from California and other places on the western side of America. The animal is known for their intelligence and ability to adapt to new environments. Besides, the animal is known for its capacity to evade larger animals that pose danger to their existence. Thanks to their high levels of intelligence, coyotes have expanded their territory to northern America. You are likely to find coyotes in the outskirts of urban centers as they source for food.
What do coyotes look like?
It is important to paint a picture of just how a coyote looks, as they can be easily mistaken for a dog or a fox. Foxes and dogs are the closest relatives to coyotes, and you can easily mistake one for the other. However, coyotes range from yellow, gray, and brown colors on the upper parts of their bodies.
Besides, you will find them having tawny colored fur in their under bellies, which may extend to their throats. For the legs, they are often white and reddish-brown heads. Coyotes have small paws pointed ears and a snout. Besides, they weigh between 15 to 40 pounds, making them relatively small compared to dogs. However, it is their thick fur that makes them appear large when you see them from a distance.
Signs to look out to know their presence
If you fail to see them physically, worry no more, there are things you can look out for in the wilderness, which give away their presence. First, check for small paws on the ground, which is very easy to see during the rainy season. Second, check for their scat which has lots of thread due to their large intake of fiber in their meals. Their rope like scat is one sure way of identifying their presence within the vicinity. Besides, they use their scat to mark their territory, and for this reason, you are likely to see lots of it in forest edges as they mark their territory. Thirdly, you are likely to hear them barking, howling, or whining to announce their presence and as they communicate with each other.
How and where do coyotes live?
Depending on the availability of food among other resources, coyotes live in groups, pairs, or may live alone. You are likely to find them in breeding pairs, and only the elusive black coyote is found alone. In fact, very few people have had the pleasure of seeing a live black coyote.
Coyotes mate once a year, and during the mating season you are likely to see them in pairs and lots of fights as the alpha males protect their females. Such fights in some cases are fatal and end up in deaths or permanent injuries.
Besides the mating aspect of coyotes, you are likely to see a group comprising of pulps and older males and females. Young males are usually chased out of the group to avoid inbreeding and also to secure the territory of the alpha male. Pulps are protected by the entire group and have one of the highest mortality rates as they have an average mortality rate of between 50% to 70% mortality rates. The size of coyotes is largely dependent on the availability of food within an area. Places with scarce food have reported having small sized coyotes as opposed to places where food is plenty.
A single coyote is likely to give birth to between 2 to 12 pups. The pups remain in the den for the first six weeks before they are allowed to join their parents in search of food, and for security purposes. By the end of summer, the pups are independent but often remain with their parents for security. Coyotes are highly social and live in highly organized formations that defend their territories and raise their young to full maturity. Coyotes from other groups especially males coyotes are the largest threat to the survival of pups. As a result, coyotes shift from one den to the other as they have many dens with multiple exits. However, their territories never overlap, and stray coyotes are killed by the resident coyotes.