Coyotes in Spencer County

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Bunny killing, shaggy dog look-alikes are everywhere

By Tom Watson

This column normally deals with Spencer County history, so it would seem to be somewhat off-track to write about coyotes, except the rabbit-murdering scoundrels have been around these parts for a long time.
There used to be more bunnies on my property than you could count. They’ve been replaced by a bunch of flea-bitten, howling creatures who get my dogs all excited so the humans can’t get a wink of sleep. I’m sure my dogs are getting invitations to join this wild bunch.
Short of resorting to violence, I am trying some other means of sending the flea-bitten mongrels (the coyotes) on their way.
Leaving a radio on the porch, tuned to an all-talk station, might work. Leaving the porch light on might also eventually succeed, but I believe there’s a sure-fire method begging to be tried.
I plan to record the Terry Meiners Show and play it back to the audience in the yard, to see if it won’t send the road-runner-chasers on their way.  
Canis latrans began showing up in Kentucky in the mid-1970s. Hunters say Wile E. and his pals are as wary, cunning and alert as any wild game with the possible exception of the wild turkey. Hunters say a mature coyote is as difficult to bring down as a wild turkey.
Ben Hall wrote in “Kentucky Afield-The Magazine” that techniques used to hunt wild turkey, varmint and bears are employed to kill coyotes. He says coyotes often hang around herds of cattle, especially during calving periods.
Driving the backroads can enable hunters to scout their quarry early and/or late in the day since coyotes are night hunters. The forebearers of today’s coyote dogged the flanks of buffalo herds. They sought the young, the old and the weak.
Hall had this to say about luring coyotes into the sights of hunters:
“If you intend to call in a coyote, you’ll probably need to apply some turkey hunting principles. Concealment is as important as it is during spring gobbler season, but the canines are more likely to be found in open country with less natural cover.
“When you’re scouting for coyotes, it’s a good idea to be watching also for a likely hiding place close by. You’ll also want to notice the wind direction at your chosen sites. Coyotes depend a great deal on their sense of smell, and, if the animals are downwind of the hunter, even the most carefully concealed person will probably never see one of these critters.”