Coyote

Canis latrans

Origin: North America and Central America

Lifespan: six to eight years, but can live up to 20 years in captivity

Size: Average adult male weighs 18 to 44 lbs ; average adult female weighs 15 to 40 lbs

Diet: Omnivorous, but mostly carnivorous

  • Opportunistic feeders

  • Preference for meat but will eat fruits and vegetation when food is scarce

  • Meat preferences consist of deer, rabbits, rodents, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish and inverts

  • Hunt individually or in small packs

Activity: Crepuscular (active mostly during twilight hours, dusk and dawn)

Reproduction:

  • Most often seen in small family units or temporary packs ​​

  • A single female in heat can attract up to seven males whom will follow her for up to a month

  • Once pairs mate they are strictly monogamous

  • Females that fail to mate sometimes assist their sisters or mothers in raising pups

  • Gestation periods last 63 days

  • Average litter size is six pups

  • Males play an active role in raising the pups, but will abandon the pups if the female goes missing before the pups are weaned

  • Pups generally leave the family in August

Extra Facts:

  • Dogs run with their tails up, while coyotes run with their tails down

  • Canis latrans means "barking dog"

  • Coyotes' body language is a cross between a fox and wolf

  • Fights amongst females tend to be more aggressive than males because they fight on four paws whereas males fight on their back legs

  • There are eleven different vocal calls

  • Coyotes can run about 40 miles per hour

  • Most coyote attacks are from hybrids of the species called coydogs or coywolves