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Obviously you once again either missed the entire point or just refuse to accept anything that isn't the way to believe it should be even when all the evidence proves you are wrong. Must be those reading comprehension skills again?

The point was, and the facts are, that when coyote numbers increased the fox, raccoon, mink and weasel numbers declined. So even though you had more coyotes you had fewer of the other predators preying on small game. So, you did not end up with any more predators in the past decades than you had back in those old days. The most common predator species might have changed some but the number of predators or the amount of prey they consumed has not changed.

As for why some species appear to have declined there are many reasons for that.

First of all many of us have not seen the degree of species decline that some profess has occurred. One of the reasons is simply that people's memories just aren't as accurate as they think they are. Without keeping good records you can easily be mistake on game sightings and game harvest from the "good ole days" to today. I became acutely aware of that fact while doing annual wildlife survey routes many years ago. While doing the same route during the same time period year after year it seemed like every year I thought I was seeing less than I had seen in prior years. But, at the end of the survey period and I would be compiling the actual numbers and comparing them to prior years it was common to discover that I was mistaken and had seen about the same number or even more than I had seen in prior year. That is why I have since always kept a log of the number of hours I spend hunting in each season and what I saw. That too hasn't changed much over the past several decades for most species. Grouse and turkey are the two exceptions to that but I also know there are factors way beyond predation that have affected the populations of those two species.

As for what can be done to help improve game sightings.

The first is to start keeping an accurate log of time afield and what you actually saw verse what you think you saw and be able to compare past reality to a past remembered.

Then the second best thing you can do to improve any wildlife population is to study it, learning what habitat it needs, what is most lacking in those needs then set out to improve those most needed habitats.

Dick Bodenhorn
Ok so predators numbers are the same, your saying if we have more of one another fills the void. Say you decrease coyotes and bobcat fill their place, or less bear and they are replaced with say coyotes. So if this works with predators, it should also apply to prey. I know you always say I do not understand how nature works and that it is prey that controls predator numbers. So if we lose quail does this mean more grouse? Or less hare, does this give us more rabbits, or when we have less pheasants do grouse numbers go up, or less muskrat do the rabbits increase? In my lifetime all I have personally seen was a decrease in prey animals, or am I not remembering correctly, or not getting out there enough?
 

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For deer more clearcutting is helpful but probably the best thing hunters can do to help to harvest about as many deer as they can. The worst thing you do when you want more deer is to over protect them and under protect their most nutritious browse species.

For turkeys I am not sure we can or even need to do much to improve their habitat though maintaining high quality grassy openings that that produce the high insect populations need poults is important. I thin k if we can get some back to back good spring weather conditions we will be well on our way toward seeing turkey numbers on the increase again.

For grouse more cutting. But, it would have to include the private lands instead of just being on the limited amount of land available on game lands and other public land. For grouse the future is bleak unless they can either figure how to get the West Nile under control or grouse build an genetic immunity.

As for muskrats that one is a mystery to me and obviously to many others as well. But, like wild pheasants in many areas of the state it seems they too disappeared rapidly in the years following the heavy flooding of hurricane Agnus in 1972.

It used to be, back in the 50s, 60s and early 70s that most farm ponds and beaver dams had a population of muskrats. Maybe farmers being less tolerant of not only muskrats but cattails and other vegetation in their ponds might have a little bit to do with it. I don't know.



Besides what you listed highways and predation as wells the urban sprawl and ever increasing introduction and take over of invasive plant and insect species that remove native habitat all have an adverse affect on a wide variety of wildlife populations, their habitats and food supplies.

Dick Bodenhorn
So basically we can not control the Weather, can not control Disease, we can not control Habitat in enough of the state because of private ownership, you list highways, there will only be more of them, invasive plants and insects, we see more of them being introduced also, and then predators the one thing we could control and used to in the past, have great or total protections on many. Coyote have little protection and and are in my opinion numerous, others like the raptors have total protection, bobcats and bear are going up in numbers with limited restrictions, fisher up in numbers with limited restrictions. So with all the things we can not control, and predators controlled by federal protection or state laws, it basically looks like we will lose our game numbers, and hunting, while predators were allowed to go unharvested or under harvested. The problems with little control on predators, is they can have a negative influence on prey numbers. Do you have any other suggestions, as I am getting old, and would like to see great numbers of especially small game and turkeys, like in the past. I will probably be dead and gone before man wakes up and tries to bring back small game, as for deer, with CWD, herd reduction plans, and predators rising in numbers I think they will go down in numbers also. The future of hunting is not looking good, and for the ones who say you do not need to kill to enjoy hunting, hunting is a lot more fun, when you know that what you are hunting for, is actually out there. Seems everything we hunt is down in numbers, except predators.
 

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Ok so predators numbers are the same, your saying if we have more of one another fills the void. Say you decrease coyotes and bobcat fill their place, or less bear and they are replaced with say coyotes. So if this works with predators, it should also apply to prey. I know you always say I do not understand how nature works and that it is prey that controls predator numbers. So if we lose quail does this mean more grouse? Or less hare, does this give us more rabbits, or when we have less pheasants do grouse numbers go up, or less muskrat do the rabbits increase? In my lifetime all I have personally seen was a decrease in prey animals, or am I not remembering correctly, or not getting out there enough?
I truly hope you aren't being serious with those questions.

The answer though is pretty simple. No few quail or pheasants doesn't mean more grouse. No fewer hare doesn't mean more rabbits.

ALL wildlife populations are primarily controlled first by their food supply and by the ability of their habitat to provide food and shelter they need to survive and complete their live cycle. Since the species you listed don't use or have the same foods and habitat requirements they aren't competing for the same things.

Many predators on the other hand do have the same overlapping food and habitat needs and thus do compete for the food supply.

Dick Bodenhorn
 

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While at a fur sale yesterday I took a poll from seasoned coyote trappers who study coyote like it is thier job. The question was simple. " Do you believe coyotes target and prey on healthy deer?" Only 1 hesitated to answer because he thought it was a trick question. 100% answered yes, with several busting out with laughter after explaining that some just don't understand the predator/prey role each play. Also talked with a friend that breeds coyote decoy dogs in Montana. He also chuckled at the premise that coyotes, even his westerns don't target healthy deer. And said the best thing to do was just to let those nonbelievers keep on believing what they want, while knowing the truth. He then went on to describe several occasions when this played out in his presence. He has 50 yrs of experience studying coyotes and their behavior and he knows the truth. Koyote Kip, out.
 
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RSB, if a man who works closely with government coyote trappers was willing to educate you on the coyote and its prey, would you be open to it? If so his name is Ed Medvetts from Homer City. Inventor of the pawsitrip pan system for foothold traps. He is a plethora of information on everything coyote. I will pm his number if you can't locate it yourself.
 
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While at a fur sale yesterday I took a poll from seasoned coyote trappers who study coyote like it is thier job. The question was simple. " Do you believe coyotes target and prey on healthy deer?" Only 1 hesitated to answer because he thought it was a trick question. 100% answered yes, with several busting out with laughter after explaining that some just don't understand the predator/prey role each play. Also talked with a friend that breeds coyote decoy dogs in Montana. He also chuckled at the premise that coyotes, even his westerns don't target healthy deer. And said the best thing to do was just to let those nonbelievers keep on believing what they want, while knowing the truth. He then went on to describe several occasions when this played out in his presence. He has 50 yrs of experience studying coyotes and their behavior and he knows the truth. Koyote Kip, out.
Yes, men with personal knowledge, and life experience, if they came on here they would probably be belittled, and put down for those observations. Especially if they did not have pictures. Maybe your poll also reflects the views of most people on here about predation, problem is some do not want the harassment that goes along with those views. As I said earlier, if coyote ate only the sick and wounded, they should have killed off all the deer with CWD. My guess is just like dogs that can detect cancer and covid in humans, coyotes should be able to pick out deer with CWD and other diseases. Thanks for the information, from men who study coyotes like it is their job, it will be interesting to see responses from those who protect the reputation of predators like, like they know more than anyone else. Never seek advice from a man of knowledge, if his views are different than yours, you may be disappointed, and see you were wrong.
 

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Ah, some people lack the ability to see the forest because of all the trees and they just clutter good threads up with nonsense.

Now, Kip you make a great observation. I believe coyotes prey upon deer but like you said not all coyotes. Just like some wolf packs sometimes specialize in certain large prey, I suspect coyotes that pack up better do target deer, particularly in winter. And I think coyotes will run deer just to guage their health and fitness for signs of illness, injury or some other weakness or fatigue. I don't think coyotes pack up just to go hunt small prey, when you hear them packing up I think it's to hunt larger prey. But I also think that for many (most?) Coyotes smaller prey and carrion make up a larger part of their diet most of the year.

(I also understand that it can be very deceiving thinking you're hearing more coyotes than you actually are. So it's tricky)
 

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Yes, men with personal knowledge, and life experience, if they came on here they would probably be belittled, and put down for those observations. Especially if they did not have pictures. Maybe your poll also reflects the views of most people on here about predation, problem is some do not want the harassment that goes along with those views. As I said earlier, if coyote ate only the sick and wounded, they should have killed off all the deer with CWD. My guess is just like dogs that can detect cancer and covid in humans, coyotes should be able to pick out deer with CWD and other diseases. Thanks for the information, from men who study coyotes like it is their job, it will be interesting to see responses from those who protect the reputation of predators like, like they know more than anyone else. Never seek advice from a man of knowledge, if his views are different than yours, you may be disappointed, and see you were wrong.
Well then you, and anyone else, who think coyotes are killing a bunch of healthy adult deer anywhere in this state shouldn't have any problem finding and posting up the picture evidence to prove it,

Pictures are what we want to see. Someone's belief that it is happening is worthless without some evidence as proof.

Yes they kill a deer now and then, but unless it is a sick, weak or stupid deer it generally only happens under extreme environmental conditions.

Dick Bodenhorn
 

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RSB, if a man who works closely with government coyote trappers was willing to educate you on the coyote and its prey, would you be open to it? If so his name is Ed Medvetts from Homer City. Inventor of the pawsitrip pan system for foothold traps. He is a plethora of information on everything coyote. I will pm his number if you can't locate it yourself.
I don't need educated on coyotes. I have had decades of experience both observing and living around them.

Just because a person is successful at trapping and/or hunting coyotes certainly doesn't make them an expert on how often coyotes kill a healthy deer.

Besides during my many years of attending all kinds of on going training about all kinds of wildlife I attended a number of training classes, from experts, some of whom did nothing but coyote seminars. We were pretty well trained on both trapping and hunting coyotes as well as their hunting habits and methods. Then I spent several decades observing and dealing with the realities of coyotes, their lifecycle and hunting behaviors.

Dick Bodenhorn
 

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I wasn't trying to be disrespectful, just seeing if you were open to possibly learning something other than your current knowledge. We all have much to learn.
Above you used the word stupid for healthy deer that are taken by coyotes. While this may occasionally be the case I would tend to believe these deer simply make a mistake. From the above postings it was reviled that even yourself is not immune to making mistakes. We all make mistakes from time to time. The coyote and deer have 24hrs a day together for mistakes to happen.
 

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do coyote kill deer...YES
do coyote eat deer...YES
do they kill deer 100% of the time.....NO
they are opportunistic feeders, they'll grab whatever is available at any given time, rodents are easier to catch and take up less energy especially in the deep snow.
do i know everything...NO :) (maybe)
 

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Coyotes are vocal....they yip and howl to communicate...every time they yip and howl isn't because they're killing or have killed something...not sure where people get that idea from.

Coyotes don't " pack up"..like hyenas ..they stay in a family group into the fall and start to disperse into October, November and generally December to establish their own territory(mating pair, as in 2...yes 2....). They start mating in January, where you may see numerous "roaming" males(not paired but looking for mate and new territory) in an area when a female(unpaired or paired) comes in heat. The established alpha male will mate with the female ...the remaining males generally move on looking for a female or new territory. Coyote mate for "life"..unless beat out by a roamer or one is killed.

I believe every one of my(our) doubles, triples and quads(Dec-Feb) has only had 1 female. March-June is almost always solos. May/June/ July is when you can shoot a lot of unbred females..we have shot a good number of them last year. July/August/September is still generally solos with September being where the pups generally get a bit more independent. Oct/ early November is family group killing time.

Coyotes are no match for a healthy deer...99.9 percent of what someone calls a coyote kill ...isn't a coyote kill..deer was already dead or severely injured( a gut shot unrecovered deer is the best example)..I don't care what one says... I'll call it BS. Like I've said before...I've observed them trolling for fawns in the spring and early summer out in fields at night. But for people to continually claim coyotes are killing all these deer is..... just as a "former" member would say..is HOGWASH
 

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Well then you, and anyone else, who think coyotes are killing a bunch of healthy adult deer anywhere in this state shouldn't have any problem finding and posting up the picture evidence to prove it,

Pictures are what we want to see. Someone's belief that it is happening is worthless without some evidence as proof.

Yes they kill a deer now and then, but unless it is a sick, weak or stupid deer it generally only happens under extreme environmental conditions.

Dick Bodenhorn
I thought they kill them when they are available and they feel like killing one. I am not as smart as you think you are, I will admit it, I am not computer smart and type with one finger. I am smart enough to find pictures on the internet. I am sure you can too. As far as doing links and such, I have to get help doing that, or when I post pictures. So far in life my knowledge of the outdoors has been more important to me, than the high tech stuff. Go on the internet, the pictures are there, I once even saw a sequence of pictures, of two coyotes bring down a mature buck.
 

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Perhaps you could have used wolves instead of hyena in your example. Oh ya, our coyotes carry up to 25% wolf DNA. This could and should put a new perspective to the subject of packing up to hunt large prey. Family groups will absolutely join together to survive if need be.

Yes coyotes howl for various reasons. One of which happens when kills are made or a food source is discovered i.e. a dead deer. Have seen this several times.

Again not saying coyotes will wipe out the deer, however killing healthy deer is not much of an issue for multiple coyotes that are experienced, determined or hungry.
 
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Perhaps you could have used wolves instead of hyena in your example. Oh ya, our coyotes carry up to 25% wolf DNA. This could and should put a new perspective to the subject of packing up to hunt large prey. Family groups will absolutely join together to survive if need be.

Yes coyotes howl for various reasons. One of which happens when kills are made or a food source is discovered i.e. a dead deer. Have seen this several times.

Again not saying coyotes will wipe out the deer, however killing healthy deer is not much of an issue for multiple coyotes that are experienced, determined or hungry.
Ya I could have used wolves...and didn't for the fact that all dogs carry 99% wolf DNA...even chihuahuas ....hyenas are a bit more impressive for the fact they kill to eat....wolves kill just to kill.
My point is coyotes don`t kill the number of adult deer that people on here insist ...every dead deer thats chewed up or down to the bones wasn't killed by a yote. And coyote crap with deer fur was't because it killed a deer.
 

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I thought they kill them when they are available and they feel like killing one. I am not as smart as you think you are, I will admit it, I am not computer smart and type with one finger. I am smart enough to find pictures on the internet. I am sure you can too. As far as doing links and such, I have to get help doing that, or when I post pictures. So far in life my knowledge of the outdoors has been more important to me, than the high tech stuff. Go on the internet, the pictures are there, I once even saw a sequence of pictures, of two coyotes bring down a mature buck.
I am not interested in pictures found on the internet from some other state.

I want those in Pennsylvania that are claiming coyotes are killing healthy adult deer to post some pictures, evidence of it happening. Will there be a few pictures? Probably. One that appears to have been a coyote kill has already showed up. But, the fact is if it were happening with anything close to as frequently as some of you profess there should be several pictures posted every day, but so far there has been one in the past week or so.

I know you can post pictures because I saw where you posted a picture of a rabbit hunt not so long ago. So, you can't use that I don't know story.

Dick Bodenhorn
 
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