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Coyote hunting woes

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by imprezagm4, Aug 10, 2007.

  1. imprezagm4

    imprezagm4 Member

    Oct 5, 2006
    Bend, OR
    Me and a buddy recently decided to take up coyote hunting, we had previously only hunted rabbits. Neither of us grew up in a hunting family, him coming from Portland, OR and I from the Bay Area. We have the right gear, he uses a Browning lever action in 22-250, and I have a Winchester model 70 in .243. We have camo and have been using hand calls.

    Problem is, we haven't seen anything. We have been out four times, we heard coyotes once, and saw tracks once, but thats as close as we have come. I'm not sure what we are doing wrong, we are trying to be quiet hiking to our stands, we try to hide in the shade, and call for about 15-20 minutes before walking somewhere else.

    I'm not sure if it is possible to be 'stealthy' walking from stand to stand as the terrain is pretty open. Should we stay in the trees and call out toward the open ground? What about elevation? Do coyotes prefer the high desert floor? Or the hills and buttes?

    Any suggestions would be appreciated, or if you have hunted coyotes in central Oregon, any reccomendations?

    The terrain is like this... usually fewer trees though
  2. brentn

    brentn Active Member

    May 17, 2007
    Dogs have good hearing, you might be just too damn loud. Also are you downwind?

    If I were you, and I'm a totall amatuer at hunting, but I would take a big piece of meat, something discarded from a meat shop like a carcass or something. I'd take it and just plop it right down and back off about 100 yards away making sure that I was not downwind. I'd get myself something nice to lay down on with a hi power spotting scope and just wait. I'd probably wait all day if I really wanted to bag one haha
  3. irishscott

    irishscott New Member

    Jun 28, 2007
    i've never hunted in oregon,but i do alot of coyote hunting.the 2 main things with coyotes is they will always try to get down wind of you and will never give you there wind.which means you should get down wind of the area you want to call and watch for approach from the sides as they try to get down wind of you.coyotes are by far the smartest animals in north america.yes that includes boone and crocket whitetails.you should have at least 2 miles between stands.any yotes within the 2 mile range would have heard your calls from the last stand and come in if they were interested.you need to study their behaviors and what call to use when.don't get dicouraged,calling coyotes ain't easy.if you get to the point where you call one in for every 8-10 stands,your doing good.once you actually call one in you'll be addicted.good luck,also remember yotes like to approach using trvel coridors like fence rows,creek edges,or thickets so watch them closely while calling.
  4. hrgrisso

    hrgrisso Active Member

    Feb 2, 2007
    Valley of the Gun
    Sit Still

    Try perching on a high spot, don't crest the hill so you don't sillouette(splng sorry), and stay put longer. We usually sit for at least a half hour usually closer to 40 minutes waiting.

    Also try different calls. Here in Az we found that the jackrabbit call works great, but switching to yearling/doe in distress we called in big cats. Try changing the calls because we've also found different times of the year things change as well.

    Big PLUS 1 to Irish for the addiction! Major Addiction!
  5. ArfinGreebly

    ArfinGreebly Moderator Emeritus

    Oct 10, 2006
    North Idaho

    That would be "UPWIND" actually.

    You don't want to be upwind.

    Said another way, you want the wind to be blowing from the target TO YOU (i.e. you are downwind of the target).
  6. Heavy Metal Hero

    Heavy Metal Hero Active Member

    Sep 17, 2006
    Maybe you should try hunting towards the latter part of the day or at night. I hear tell the coyotes are more active then.
  7. eliphalet

    eliphalet Participating Member

    Apr 16, 2007
    Coyotes are smart critters, it may take some work to get good at hunting them. Take a look at this web site and remember how good it will feel once you get good at it.
    I heard the jack rabbits are by the thousands down in Harney County, if you get a chance run down that way. Any where there are too many rabbits there are lots of coyotes to feed on em. Try to talk to a local Fish and game guy, or hunters, as Bend is a good area to hunt around.


    Last edited: Aug 10, 2007
  8. easy

    easy Member

    Dec 6, 2005
  9. imprezagm4

    imprezagm4 Member

    Oct 5, 2006
    Bend, OR
    So, would it be smart to stay in cover while moving if possible? (Such as a treeline) Or are they going to see/hear/smell me anyhow when I'm hiking?

    Some really good advice in here, I appreciate it, I think I need to be much more aware of the wind! It sounds like that is key.
  10. koja48

    koja48 member

    Feb 21, 2005
    SE WA State
    Watch the wind, don't call too loudly . . . coyotes will always try to circle around, so set-up where you have a good field of view & don't call too often. Mornings & evenings are best, except for late winter when they move throughout the day looking for a date; then howling works better than sounding like injured prey. Hang in there. Trust me, there are yotes all over your area.
  11. Zeke Menuar

    Zeke Menuar Participating Member

    Jun 24, 2003
    Oregon Monsoon Central
    I have a friend that has a wounded rabbit call. He recorded a minute of it and put it into my HD.

    I looped the recording, took my CD player and a speaker, left it out in the Desert, turned the player on shuffle and waited.

    Coyotes may be wary, but they are hungry. A managed to draw a couple into range of my 270 and...well...you know the rest.

    This was in the Christmas Valley/Ft Rock area.

    I have also shot a rabbit or two and bagged a couple Coyotes that way.

  12. glockman19

    glockman19 Senior Member

    Mar 16, 2007
    Use bait...shoot a rabbit, plant some dog food they will smell it.
  13. goldminer

    goldminer New Member

    Sep 29, 2007
    Stand site selection is critical.

    1. A person has to be in an area that holds coyotes.
    Suggestion: spend some time "prospecting". Talk with local people, they can tell you where they hear and see them.

    2. Select a position where you can see best...a bit of high ground if available and note where your shooting lanes are...coyote are low to the ground.

    3. Expect that a coyote will circle and come in from the down wind side. While moving downwind the animal will be using it's nose, it's eyes, and it's ears (in this order) and anything that doesn't look, smell, or sound "right" and the critter is GONE and a lot of times you'll never have known that it was there. If you've set up in an area where you can't see but maybe 100 yards or so tend to your scent like you would if you were deer hunting, no to minimum movement; and quiet. Said another way, be still and don't stink up the area.

    2. "Call" all three senses: ears (sound), eyes (sight), and nose (smell).
    Suggestion: Down wind a bit from the site you plan to shoot from, tie a some feathers together and place them in an area where any breeze will put them into motion and an animal will be able to see them. Get some fresh blood and prepare it with sodium benzoate and sodium citrate. s. benzoate will keep the blood from spoiling and s. citrate will keep it from coagulating. Use a good tsp of both chemicals to 1 quart of blood & easily shake well to disolve and distributed the chemicals. They are both white-powder like substances. Carry it in a squeeze ketchup bottle or something similiar that has a secure lid. Squirt the blood on shrubbery or somethng that's handy close to the feathers. Carry 2 or 3 different calls and remember that small animals in distress have small lungs that hold a small volume of air. Keep your audio calls sounds short rather than long using the large capacity of air you have.

    3. Set up your shooting spot just upwind of your nose and eye calls and make sure you have a good solid bi-pod or tri-pod rest to shoot from...keeping in mind that you will probably have to physically shift your position around to line up on the target when you have a clear shot. And make sure when you move you do it VERY slowly like you would if deer hunting. Any other movement will be easily detected by the coyote.

    4. Call for maybe 20 minutes if you don't see one move to another location...but if you've done your homework, you'll be calling in an area where coyotes are located. High wind makes successful calling difficult because it limits the distance that the call will be heard, and all animals are uncomfortable when there is ground wind because it causes a lot of movement that inhibits an animal from visually detecting possible danger...making them more vulnerable.

    5. When you are ready to shoot bark a couple of times like a dog to get the coyote to stop yet not be alarmed.

    6. A two person team allows the shooter to locate to the side of the caller and with good camo, no stink, and sitting still, a coyote will not know the shooter is there because the coyote will be focused on what it is first hearing, then probably smelling, and lastly seeing....giving a consistent and reinforced message to the coyote that it's safe and a good meal is waiting up ahead.

    7. Remember that a coyote has exceptional senses...particularly the nose. I used to do a lot of trapping in So. Dakota and have more than once made a baited dirt-hole set using tainted meat placed like an animal had burried it for later consumption, had a half dozen inches or so of fresh snow cover the ground during the night, and caught a coyote. I have seen tracks that show that the coyote I caught had crossed (say) east-to-west a quarter mile or so downwind from the set, caught the scent of the bait did a 90 degree turn and came straight to the set. DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE THE SENSITIVITY OF A COYOTES NOSE AND THEIR #1 PRIORITY AT ALL TIMES: SURVIVAL, AND HOW ASTUTELY THEY USE THEIR SENSES AT ALL TIMES TO STAY AWARE OF THEIR SURROUNDINGS. A coyote is like a turkey in the sense that any sense that something is not "right" and it is gone...right now period. It won't pass "go" and it won't pause to colllect $200.00.

    I hope this helps. Good hunting to you.
  14. Kimber1911_06238

    Kimber1911_06238 Participating Member

    Jan 14, 2007
    If I go coyote hunting, I never see anything. When I go deer hunting, I frequently have 10-20 yard shots at them with my bow....go figure.

    The darn predator calls and the rifle seem to scare them away
  15. BigSoundRacing

    BigSoundRacing Member

    Feb 2, 2007
    I bought calls, but need to learn how to use them. Then I found this site:


    Now I'm heading to Radio Shack to build me a caller using the mp3 files. I like this idea because the caller can be sitting on the next ridge. I've heard of people calling from a bush and not checking their 6, only to discover that there is a coyote standing behind them or a mountain lion stocking them.

    As usual, check with local hunting regs.

    Be safe, BSR
  16. coelacanth

    coelacanth Member

    Mar 5, 2007
    find a shady spot, sit still, use your binoculars. . . . .

    when you're sitting still you can spot their movement but when you're moving they will invariably detect yours either by sight or sound even if they have not picked up your scent. Never be surprised by where you see a coyote - the last two I saw were just checking out my suburban neighborhood. One was trotting across a small ( 5 acres ) city park and the other was hauling butt down the middle of the street in front of my house on his way to the canal bank which leads to some open farmland nearby. Here in Az. they will usually seek water very early and very late in the day either for their own needs or to maximize the chances of bagging a meal so mark your water sources as possible hot spot. Good luck and good hunting.
  17. target1911

    target1911 Member

    Feb 12, 2007
    Ft Worth TX
    Do you have any kind of a decoy? It could be something as simple as a tying a turkey feather to a stick and shoving in the ground about 50-100yds out....just let the wind do the rest. the movement will get their attention. It will also help you see the wind direction.

    Anytime you move, use any cover you can...tree line, creek...and move slow and quiet.
  18. jeepmor

    jeepmor Senior Member

    Nov 6, 2005
    Close to Bend they get shot at alot, so they are extra wary. Go further East. My family and I have been going to Rome, OR area, West of the Owhyee (sp?) river for a year or two now. There is a LOT of desert out there. The more sage brush you can get into the better. There also aren't many people out there, so they are not as shy to approach the call. They are still coyotes and they are very wary. Neat thing is, you can call them day and night no matter what the hours are.

    Finding open grassy spots on the edge of sagebrush provided our best results. We would sit down in the sage brush and actually put a bush right to our back kind of like a backrest. You can't seem to hold still enough either. Go to Sporstmans Warehouse and get yourself one of those padded seats, you'll be glad you did.

    My stepdad and BIL both have Foxpro callers and they were quite effective (and expensive). The cool thing about them is that you can put them way out in front of you and use a remote to vary the calls. We ran the caller constantly once we were setup. More is better in our experience, not less. However, they still don't like to get to close, they will go way out of the way so they can approach from downwind. They often route 200-300 yards around to approach from downwind. I'd suggest a sacrificial rabbit to provide a decent scent for them to find so they don't notice yours as much.

    One thing I may have missed in this thread but is worth mentioning again just in case, if you see a crow or magpie approaching your call, a coyote is usually following the bird. Since you can see the birds coming from way off, use it as an opportunity to turn your rifle and body that way because the coyotes WILL be following that bird.

    Out in this area, we only went a mile or so between stands and did fine. We saw over 10 coyotes in two days and shot at several. I missed em, but the BIL's uncle got three. He's a much better shot and hunting in nearly his second job. Me, I'm just learning, but it is lot of fun.

    Rome, OR via mapquest, lower the magnification to get a good look at where it is.

    Also, around Mann lake, East of Steens mountain, there were a lot of them also. My wife and I were on vacation this spring and there were two or three clans out there. They yipped so much at night that I had to fire my handgun off just to get some sleep, seriously. They particularly liked hanging around the lake because it brought the waterfowl in at night where they could get a meal. Some geese didn't make it. Lot of private land in that area though, further east is even better, due South of the lake is a cattle ranch. Nice hot springs out there too, about 20-30 minutes South of Mann lake. If you have a Oregon Gazetteer mapbook, it'll be easy to find.

    If you want any more tips on the location, just PM me. This post is getting a bit long in tooth, but I'm always happy to share my experiences with any that will listen, or read for that matter.

    Last edited: Oct 10, 2007

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