One of Yellowstone's three canids.

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Hunting Birds

Hunting with a camera that is. Birds are fascinating to watch and try to find. Let's start exploring....


Animals are intriguing to look for and watch in the wild. They come in all shapes and sizes. What do you know about the animals you see?....

Hydrothermal Features

Yellowstone National Park exist today because of it's 10,000+ features....

Water of Yellowstone

If you visit Yellowstone National Park water will be a key resource of your visit....

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Coyote mom with some of her nine pups

In 2007, this coyote mom raised nine pups about 15 yards from the Grand Loop Road. When I was on site there was probably $100,000 worth of camera glass on her and her family.

There are 19 different subspecies of coyotes residing from Canada to Central America. Coyotes used to be only in the prairies and deserts of central and Western North America. But with humans opening more habits, the coyotes have spread further afield. Coyotes are so adaptable that they now thrive in cities.

Yellowstone National Park is home to three canines: wolves, coyotes, and foxes. The coyote is the middle of the three, size -ise. They weigh 25-35 pounds. The average lifespan is 6 years up to 13 years.

Coyote tails are bushy and held down when running. Look for a black tip on the tail.

Coyotes' forelegs, sides of head, muzzle, and paws are reddish brown. Their face and muzzle are pointed.

Coyote walking across snow

Coyote on a mission walking across the snow mound near the Grand Loop Road. Notice that coyotes have a black tip on their tail.

Coyote eating a vole

Here, a coyote caught and ate a vole for lunch.

They primarily eat small mammals such as voles, prairie dogs, ground squirrels, and mice. But they also will eat carrion, and you can see them waiting their turn at a carrion feeding site. However, coyotes do consume a significant amount of fruits and vegetables. So, coyotes are omnivores. They are good at pest control.

Coyotes mate for life and are monogamous.

Both parents work together to raise, feed, and defend their pups. Coyotes are known to have 1 to 19 pups in a litter. This is a defensive measure against the high juvenile mortality rate. Approximately 50 - 70% of the pups do not survive to adulthood. The pups emerge from the den 3 - 4 weeks after birth. In Yellowstone, they are born in April and come out of the den in May. They are fully weaned 35 days after birth. So, the pups you see in the above picture are still reasonably young since they were still taking milk.

Coyotes have large ears proportionally to their head size. When they are zeroing in on prey, their ears are pointed up and forward.

Coyote in field looking for dinner

This coyote was in a field looking for dinner. It stood still with its ears pointed forward, listening intently for any little sound.

Check out this page to compare wolves, coyotes, and foxes seen in Yellowstone National Park.

Coyote by the Yellowstone River

Coyote lounging by the Yellowstone River early one October morning as golden fog lifts off the river.

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