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Giving a little respect to Ol' Wile Coyote


By Danny Batastini

Good outdoorsmen believe in game management - and why not? It makes good sense as it keeps the future of hunting intact for future generations. When it comes to predator hunting, predators such as fox, bobcat, badger, bears, mountain lion, etc all have seasons with just a couple of states being the exception. However, in the southwest I know of no state that has any kind of a season on coyote. They may be taken year round. It sounds to me like Mr. And Mrs. Coyote don't get much respect.

As a predator caller, I have always respected the coyote to the utmost. I have never hunted them during the denning season (March thru June) unless there were some depredation problems to deal with - which is understandable. Coyotes do, at times, need to be controlled. To me, it makes no sense whatsoever to take a female coyote that has a den full of blind and hungry pups or to shoot one with six pups yet to be born. Your one bullet could take out six pups - that's six less for you next year! That doesn't add up to be good sense in my book - unless, of course, you're doing depredation control. Then it makes perfect sense.

Many of you will know that the US government has undertaken many coyote eradication programs and all of them have failed. The coyote is too hardy of an animal. He always makes a comeback despite the eradication efforts. Some eradication programs have met with limited success by simply Danny Batastini reducing the number of coyotes in a particular area so, as with the cockroach, we will never eliminate him (thank God). In areas where there is no coyote management, maybe serious predator callers should consider not taking coyotes during the denning season of March through June (the pelts aren't worth anything then anyway!). I would give those little prairie wolves a chance to grow up thus giving you a worthy adversary later in the year. Before anyone jumps out of their skin or starts "chuckin' a wobbly", this is just my opinion - I only wish it were yours too if only out of respect for the animal.

Of course you can do as you like, but hopefully you will give this some serious thought. Maybe we all can practice a little "non-required" but sensible game management thus ensuring very good hunting for the predator caller. I've hunted the coyote for most of my adult life in almost every western state and over the years have developed a very high respect for what is probably one of the smartest predators in North America. I hope that you too will develop a respect for this animal - if you haven't already.

Thank you and Good hunting!!!
Danny Batastini

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