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Adventure in Alaska

Coyote Sighting!

April 17, 2016

Here are some facts about the coyote from the Alaska Department of Fish & Game:

  • Size
    Coyotes average 22 to 33 pounds (10-15 kg) or about one-third the size of wolves. Males are slightly heavier than females. Coyotes average 2 feet high (.6 m) at the shoulder and, including tail, are approximately 4 feet (1.2 m) long.
  • Range/Distribution
    Southeast and much of Interior Alaska; there are few records of the coyote north of the Yukon River, although they do occur in this area. Portions of the state with the highest densities of coyotes are the Kenai Peninsula, the Matanuska and Susitna valleys and the Copper River Valley.
  • Diet
    opportunistic predators, In Alaska snowshoe hares, microtine rodents, and carrion (in Alaska, mostly moose and caribou) comprise the bulk of the coyote's diet while marmots, ground squirrels, muskrats, fish, insects, and even Dall sheep are taken in fewer numbers.
  • Predators
    Great horned owls, bald and golden eagles, wolves, and bears all have been known to prey on coyotes.
  • Reproduction
    Coyotes are quick to respond to increases or decreases in prey. They have fewer pups when food is scarce, or they can have large litters when hares are abundant.

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