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Scouting = Coyote Hunting Success

Scouting = Coyote Hunting Success

By Heath Baker

After moving into my new home in the middle of October, I was more than excited to venture out and explore the surrounding area for potential coyote hunting spots. My house was located just outside of a small Missouri town that consisted of 243 people. I had done my homework on Google Earth and noticed there was a plethora of open farm land nearby covered with draws and hedgerows. Needless to say, the land looked promising in holding a few coyotes.

Scouting = Coyote Hunting Success

After a long day of unpacking, I found myself standing on the back porch with an open reed howler in hand, watching the sun settle over a vast cut cornfield. Anxiously I stood, listening for a song dog to break the silence. Thirty disappointing minutes later, the only thing that broke that silence was the buzz of the yard light kicking on. I then raised my howler to my mouth and let out a long lonesome howl that seemed to echo for miles. I waited, and before I could answer myself a group of coyotes lit up two fields over, then another group began to serenade from north, and a few more answered farther away from the south. As I listened to the orchestra of coyote yips that seemed to come from nearly every direction, I couldn’t help but to grin and think to myself, “Game on!”

The following morning, I left my rifle in its case and threw my Nikon Edge binoculars in the truck with one mission on my mind: intensive scouting. I drove down the nearest dirt road in the direction of the closest group of coyotes I had located the night before. To my surprise, a quarter mile down the road I spotted three full coated coyotes about 500 yards out. As I sat and observed them, I analyzed where they may have came from, where they were going, and possible set up locations based upon different wind directions. I also noticed that the coyotes paid little attention to my truck, and were most likely lightly pressured if at all.

After watching them for a while I drove to an old farm house where the landowner lived. I then introduced myself to my new neighbors and joyfully gained permission to hunt the land in which the coyotes resided. The land owner also informed me that he had seen as many as seven coyotes passing through his pastures at once!

I spent three more days scouting the land and patterning the group of coyotes. My buddies questioned why I had not already tried my luck and made a few sits in the new area. I explained to them that I knew the coyotes were there, I also knew they were not being pressured by any other hunters, and most importantly I knew their morning and evening patterns. I felt my odds were far better after gaining all of this information rather than hunting the area blindly. However, I did feel plenty anxious to put all of my intel together, throw on my camo and let some fur fly.

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