Canis Latrans: Overview and Facts

The Canis Latrans is the species name for coyotes. They are found in various parts of North America and can be found on almost any terrain from grasslands to deserts. Since they are classified as Canis, they are from the dog family. We have an overview and some facts about coyotes that will help you develop a better understanding of the animal.


Belonging to the dog family, the coyote has a resembles the dog. However, you can easily differentiate a coyote from a dog. They are, however, much harder to differentiate from wolves. Coyotes, generally have grayish-brown fur which is white on the belly and under the neck. Their tails are bushy and they share similar traits to the dog. The animal isn’t large, the average coyote weighs between 15-25 pounds and grows to be about 35-40 inches.

The mating season for coyotes is between February and April. The female can birth to 3-12 pups at a time. The pups stay with the family and are looked after by the parents. However, the male pups end up leaving the family 6 months after the birth, once they are old enough to be on their own. The average lifespan for a coyote is from 10-14 years in the wild.

Facts about coyotes

– Unlike wolves, who usually always hunt in a pack, coyotes don’t always hunt in a pack and can hunt on their own also. However, they do usually travel in the pack also.  

– Coyotes tails stay down as they run as opposed to dogs which run with their tails up.

– Coyotes are vocal, they communicate with their pack especially in the night.

– They are nocturnal animals.

– While coyotes are predators themselves, they also have a few predators that hunt them down like bears, wolves, and mountain lions.

– Coyotes can swim.

– Coyotes have a longer lifespan in captivity with an average of 20 years.

– They have an appetite for almost anything, so they can eat anything they find.

– They have great sensory when it comes to sight and smell.

– They can run up to 40 miles per hour.

– Their pups are born blind.

– Coyotes are monogamous creatures, they usually have only one mate their whole life.

– They are carnivorous but their diet also consists of berries and fruits.

Coyotes can be found all over US and Canada while they can also be found in parts of Mexico. Even with the urbanization, coyotes population in the region is on the rise. They have adapted well the urbanization and at times can even be spotted in the city. Their natural habitat, however, is deserts, forests, and grasslands.