For 20 years, coyote population experiencing steady growth in Western Pa.
Coyotes come in all colors — nearly white to all black — and never “waste a meal,” said Tom Fazi of the Pennsylvania Game Commission.
Coyotes also possess powerful jaws and eat the bones of their prey.
“They just crunch them up,” Fazi said.
In western Pennsylvania, the average male coyote weighs 45 to 55 pounds, compared to the average 35- to 40- pound female.
“Its tail is almost always pointing downward,” Fazi said.
Lanky legs, erect ears and an elongated snout also distinguish a coyote.
Fazi described coyotes as a growing population of shy, efficient predators.
“The whole eastern part of the country has seen an increase in coyotes in the last 20 years,” he said.
A coyote's diet ranges from fruit to small mammals.
“They'll eat anything ... They're omnivores,” Fazi said. “They have no natural predators in Pennsylvania.”
But Dan Puhala of Ross, the game commission's local wildlife conservation officer, can connect property owners with trappers and hunters willing to help people rid their homesteads of coyotes.
“If they (property owners) want to get some recreational guys, it's free,” Puhala said. “People ask me all the time for places to trap or hunt.”
It can cost at least $200, however, to hire licensed trappers, such as Tim Giger of Middlesex, Butler County.
“Every situation is different,” Giger said. “I might not be able to help them out.”
Giger uses paw holds and cable restraints to catch coyotes, but such devices cannot safely be used in areas with free-roaming dogs.
“The paw hold is most effective,” Giger said. “To call them (coyotes) in and shoot them is more difficult.”
Coyotes in western Pennsylvania generally roam in small family groups of two to 10 individuals. “They don't have a den were they go,” Fazi said.
To obtain a list of licensed and recreational coyote hunters and trappers, call the Pennsylvania Game Commission at 724-238-9523.
Deborah Deasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-772-6369 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- St. Ursula School in Hampton to show off 104-year success story
- Pine puts windmill back on sale
- Shaler funeral home 1st in the state to offer DNA banking
- Auto-repair shop plan for former Wexford fire station hits opposition
- Workshop on dealing with divorce to be offered at Hampton church
- North Hills Drama Club goes ‘green’ with musical