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subsonic
01-21-2008, 12:50 PM
I read in a deer hunting magzine (I know...) that as hunting pressure increases on coyote populations, the litter size increases and population may actually INCREASE.

Now, this seems pretty difficult to swallow. There were no specifics to back this, just a generic blanket statement of "studies show".

I figured someone on here would be able to give specifics if it was true or false, or at least it would make for good conversation.

The only thing I could think of that may support this, is that as population goes down, competition goes down, therefore food (and everything else) is more plentiful for the few remaining 'yotes - which might encourage larger litters.

RatherBHuntin
01-21-2008, 01:04 PM
which would just bring the pop back up to where it was at originally.......unless your better at your control measures than they are at breeding

rockinbbar
01-21-2008, 03:00 PM
No way....

Despite our best efforts to exterminate the coyote, it still thrives due to it's adaptability.

As far as increasing populations when numbers get low, that would indicate some very strange genetics indeed.

On a similar note, whitetail deer have kindof a built in population increaser-reducer...;)

In dry years, there are more buck fawns born than doe fawns. Vice versa for wet years.

Daryl (deceased)
01-21-2008, 03:08 PM
Coyotes do have larger litters when numbers are fewer, and smaller litters when numbers are up. I've read and heard this from several different biologists.

Which is also why killing random coyotes seldom solves a coyote predation problem. You have to target the animals doing the damage to stop the problem. Of course, the more coyotes you kill, the less there will be THAT YEAR to cause damage.

But there are other things to consider.

This is also why ADC people target coyote populations in the spring. They kill off entire litters at the time of year when the young of "more desireable" animals are at the highest risk. It's pretty much required in some antelope areas to keep the coyotes from killing off 100% of the fawns.

The danger of this idea comes in when someone who doesn't know coyotes all that well starts trying to solve a coyote predation problem during denning. They kill off the male, because he's the one out hunting, and force the female to hunt AND tend the pups. This is when a coyote will take more chances to get food for the young, and larger, easier animals are their focus (read sheep, calves, etc).

And guess what young coyotes learn to hunt when they were raised on young beef?

Not that the original male won't kill domestic livestock. Many times they do, and need to be dealt with, but it's far better to take out the litter if a problem exists in the springtime.

Daryl

Gmoney
01-21-2008, 05:12 PM
All I know is I like to reduce it...grin...

rockinbbar
01-21-2008, 05:41 PM
I have always considered food availability into all populations...perhaps more food, bigger litters? Less food, smaller litters?

Daryl (deceased)
01-21-2008, 08:17 PM
That's what I've always figured too, rockin'. More coyotes, less food, smaller litters. Less coyotes, more food, coyotes are healthier and have larger litters.

Although I've never heard of an exact reason, that's what I suspect.

:)

Daryl

rockinbbar
01-21-2008, 08:33 PM
Are they paired up over there yet, Daryl?

Daryl (deceased)
01-22-2008, 03:19 AM
They're getting there, Barry. Saw a couple running together a couple days ago while I was out showing some friends some new country.

Good time for howling over the next month or so. ;)

I was going to go out in the morning (right now it's 1:20 AM), but had a few things come up that need done. Going to head out tomorrow morning instead.

Daryl

Gmoney
01-22-2008, 09:32 AM
Fox here are pairing up FWIW...
Only called in 3 singles last weekend to 7 doubles....

Pretty good indication...

gitano
01-22-2008, 12:38 PM
I read in a deer hunting magzine (I know...) that as hunting pressure increases on coyote populations, the litter size increases and population may actually INCREASE.

Now, this seems pretty difficult to swallow. There were no specifics to back this, just a generic blanket statement of "studies show". One should always seek the exact source of referenced "science". "Studies show" is usually code for my brother-in-law's second cousin who took biology in college told me".

I figured someone on here would be able to give specifics if it was true or false, or at least it would make for good conversation. Gmoney, isn't your 'stock and trade' wildlife management?

The only thing I could think of that may support this, is that as population goes down, competition goes down, therefore food (and everything else) is more plentiful for the few remaining 'yotes - which might encourage larger litters.

"hunting pressure increases" and "litter size increases" and "population increase" are important phrases.

"Hunting pressure increases" doen not necissarily mean that actual take or kill increases. It could simply mean that there are more hunters in the woods, thereby increasing "pressure", but no necessarily decreasing population. For the statement to be meaningful scientifically, the take must be known.

"Litter size increases" doesn't automatically mean that the coyote "population increases", it just means that litter size increases. Often when litter or clutch size increases, there is little or no increase in over-all population size due to increased juvenile mortality.

Coyotes are extraordinarily adaptable, and are surprisingly able to maintain their populations in the face of serious efforts at eradication. The real killer of coyotes is poison. Poinoning combined with springtime den removal is the only way that has proven absolutely effective in removing coyotes from an area. Of course, poisoning kills indiscriminately, and lots of other beneficial critters die in the wake of heavy poisoning.

All of the above said, there are two examples I have first-hand knowledge of where increased exploitation is correlated with increased reproductive effort. Hair seals in the Aleutian chain, and moose in Scandanavia.

Prior to the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, the hair seal population in the Aleutian chain was very healthy, and numbers were high. After 1972, when white men were excluded from being allowed to hunt seals, the populaton crashed. By 1972, the Alaskan natives had quit relyingon seals and other indigenous animals for sustenance. Hunting became a "cultural thing". The seal population has never returned to pre-1972 levels.

As I have posted here before, the annual moose harvest in Alaska runs about 5,000. The annual moose harvest in Scandanavia runs about 100,000. Alaska has an area of about 1,717,855 square kilometers while Norway, Sweden and Finland have an area of about 1,173,264 square kilometers. Cow moose are aggressively taken in the Scandanavian hunting managment plan. Cow moose are aggressively protected in Alaska. There are no specific scientific studies of which I am aware relating cow moose exploitation and fecundity (roughly "litter size"). However, the indirect evidence suggesting that the population as a whole responds to increased harvest with increased producton, is compelling.

Finally, I'm always extremely skeptical of a "hunting magazine" suggesting (without specific citations of actual research accomplished) that "hunting" increases populations. It's too self-serving. It's sad but true that we seek truth in hunting magazines bvecause there is NO truth about hunting in the popular media. Unfortunately, there is little truth in the "hunting" media either. The bottom line is there is little truth to be found anywhere these days. Everybody is lying... But it's "OK" because it's for the "good cause".

I need no hunting rag to allow me to "justify" taking coyotes. Most hunting is self-limiting. If hunters take too many, there won't be any to shoot and hunters will "go elsewhere" and the population will rebound. My use of "hunters" above, absolutely and most vigorously excludes ANY commercial endeavor. Commercial exploitation USUALLY leads to extinction. If not globally, at least locally. If you really wanna remove an animal from the face of the earth, just put a price on its head. (A real price. Not the $2 bounty put on coyotes at one time. Make coyote pelts worth $30 a piece, and in a year, there won't be one within a hundred miles.)

Paul

Gmoney
01-22-2008, 01:17 PM
It is Paul as is yours, I believe?
I pretty much agree with what was already said here.

Wild animals are wild animals and there is a built in system for population control before we started "hunting".

So many variables are involved in population dynamics that it is too much to cover. It is one of my favorite topics regarding management though as it is fascinating.

RatherBHuntin
01-22-2008, 05:40 PM
Doesn't it all boil down to the simple statement that an animal will conform to it's environment's carrying capacity?

It seems to be true for a single animal or it's aggregate population. A large fish will grow until it reaches the size it's tank will accomadate. Rodents will multiply until they run out of food and then their pops will spike, overburden their food source, and then after the famine they will be at their nominal population density. Or so it seems to me.

Paul Hoskins
01-23-2008, 03:10 PM
I seriously doubt there is any effective method of controlling coyote population outside of poison but as has been pointed out, this is a dangerous method. Maine has one of the largest coyote populations I ever saw. It is to the point of being ridiclous but still there is no noticable decline in population where aggressive snaring was undertaken by the state. Snaring is somewhat effective in localized areas but soon as snaring is stopped, the population is soon back to it's former level. It seems a shame that the coyote situation is so out of hand but there is little that can be done now. It is much like our deer population here in northern Kentucky. Deer hunting restrictions have been drastically reduced but the population doesn't go down. Most of the deer I know of being killed this year were male deer, with a large portion of them being buttonheads. I have never seen so many male deer as this past season. There is a limit of one buck in the state of Ky. but no limit on antlerless deer in the northern third of the state. Killing more does still hasn't reduced the population. .........Paul H

RatherBHuntin
01-23-2008, 08:08 PM
Ya'll seem to be fairly adept at picking out the females on the run, any tips?

rockinbbar
01-23-2008, 09:30 PM
Shoot em all, then go see, Glenn...;)

davidlt89
01-24-2008, 01:17 PM
Paul,
for as many coyotes as we are supposed to have, we sure don't see many. I have seen trappers take some, maybe 60-70 a winter, but it does not do much good. Maybe if we had as many people hunt them as hunt deer, birds, and bear, then we might see some results. My father works in a wood yard and the coyotes took a deer down right in the middle of the yard last month. They did not kill it, but managed to chew a leg off of it before someone came to its aid. God bless.