Coyote Population Booms in Florida

by
posted on July 26, 2021
main-coyote.jpg (1)

Coyotes have inundated South Florida to such a level that Broward County Parks, along with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, held an online coyote seminar this spring on dealing with coyotes.

The FWC said there’s no population estimate for coyotes in Florida, but they’ve been spotted in all 67 counties, and even on beaches.

Angeline Barker, a biologist with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says coyotes arrived by walking across bridges and roads, or by swimming.

“It turns out, coyotes are fairly strong swimmers,” Barker said.

Coyotes can thrive in urban, suburban and rural areas because they’re adaptable, according to the FWC. They can eat almost everything humans eat, including fruits, nuts and seeds, and they can eat pet food, garbage, rodents, domestic cats and small dogs.

The FWC suggests keeping pets on a non-retractable leash no longer than 6 feet when taking a walk, and having a fenced yard.

“I don’t want to sugarcoat it for you,” Barker said, “Coyotes and other wildlife, other predators will absolutely predate pets if they are free-ranging.”

“We understand coyote sightings have been reported more frequently in the urban portions of Broward County,” Linda Briggs Thompson, environmental program manager for Broward County Parks and Recreation Division, said in an email. “Because there are misconceptions about coyotes, the reactions from residents are often based on fear rather than on an understanding of coyote behavior and motivations.”

Coyotes are so frightened of people that there are very few reports of bites, according to the FWC.

The first documented coyote in Broward County was in 1990, according to Briggs Thompson.

An interactive map from the FWC tracks calls the agency receives from the public regarding coyote sightings. The green dots on the map are sightings reported within the last 24 months, and the blue dots are calls received more than 24 months ago.

The average Florida coyote weighs 28 pounds, according to the FWC. Coyotes breed every year and females produce between two and 12 pups per litter, which are raised in a den. Coyotes are predatory and help control the populations of foxes, opossums and raccoons.

The FWC, along with the University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences contend it’s tough to relocate coyotes.

“Removing coyotes from one area can result in other coyotes moving in from surrounding areas and producing more pups per litter,” according to the FWC website.

Latest

100Th Anniversary
100Th Anniversary

Federal Ammunition 100-Year Celebration Sweepstakes Winner Announced

As part of the 100-year anniversary celebration, Federal Ammunition partnered with the NRA to hold one of the largest sweepstakes in company history.

Inaugural Virginia Elk Hunt Generates $600K+in Conservation Funding

Hunters supporting Virginia’s first-ever managed elk hunt scheduled to take place October 8-14, generated more than $606,000 to bolster wildlife and management projects within the state’s elk-management zone.

Head to Head: 6.8 Western vs. .270 Winchester

Between the .270 Winchester and the new 6.8 Western, which cartridge is the better all-around choice for the hunter? Contributor Philip Massaro examines the pros and cons of each.

First Look: Hatsan Mod 130S QE Carnivore

HatsanUSA has debuted the Mod 130S QE Carnivore—a powerful .30 caliber (7.62mm) air rifle at home both in the field and on the range.

4 Ways to Manage Buck Fever

These techniques will help you perform better when it matters most.

First Look: Templar Reagan Hunting Knife

Templar Knife has launched the Reagan field-dressing knife, just in time for the peak of deer season.

Interests



Get the best of American Hunter delivered to your inbox.