Canis latrans

This coyote stood very still and only shifted his ears back and forth hearing sounds that we could not hear, may be just a rustle. It was dinner time and this meadow was his dinner plate. No movement by the smallest creatures escaped his scanning.

The coyote is a very adaptable and opportunistic feeder, and a proficient hunter and scavenger. His nose is so attuned to his environment that he can smell a mouse under the snow. In addition to its staple foods, rodents and hares, the coyote diet may also include vegetation, carrion, garbage, birds, deer, young Rocky Mountain sheep and domestic livestock, as available.

Potential for large litter size (2-16, average 5) and high proportion of females breeding (including yearlings) allow coyote populations to persist even under intensive exploitation and/or control efforts. Competition by this aggressive predator for food and territories frequently result in reductions in populations of bobcats and red foxes.

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