The coyote was searching among my blue agaves for food, and that means live food. Tomorrow I will show you the cute little guy the coyote was after.
Coyotes can jump our six foot block fences in one leap. Lately, they have been coming around more, but this is the first time we have seen one in our backyard. Usually they stick to chasing animals in the front yards and on the streets. Although two of our neighbors recently lost their pet cat and small dog to the coyotes.
The term Coyote is from Mexican Spanish, and is derived from the Nahuatl word "coyotl." The scientific name is Canis Latrans, which means "barking dog." It is also know as "prairie wolf" and the "trickster." Many Native American stories involve the coyote and how quickly it fools the eye and vanishes. Here one second and gone the next. I have seen this first hand many times.
Coyotes can run up to 43 miles per hour (69 km/h) and jump up to 13.5 feet (4 meters). The upper frequency range for coyotes is 80 k Hz, compared to 60 k Hz for domestic dogs. Some experts have noted that the shape of a domestic dog's brain case is similar to a coyote's, not a wolf's. Coyotes live around people better than wolves. Wolves are hostile to coyotes.
Coyotes are generally nocturnal but because of human pressures they are becoming more diurnal. Coyotes generally travel in pairs. Coyotes in groups are called a pack, band or a rout. Coyotes' social behavior is similar to the Dingo in Australia.
Coyotes live up to ten years in the wild. People usually hear coyotes more than see them. Coyotes make a high pitched sound of howls, yelps, and barks. I hear them at night when I am in the desert, but only occasionally hear them around my house.
Coyotes have a symbiotic relationship with Badgers. They even hunt together, and the coyotes will sometimes take the badgers' or groundhogs burrows. Coyotes and bobcats can live in somewhat close proximity of one another. Coyotes, however, are often killed by cougars and wolves.
Coyotes do not attack adult humans but can attack small animals and children. Coyotes are not afraid of humans. I have gone outside in the early morning to stomp my feet at them when they are in my front yard, and they just look at me and slowly saunter away. When I see them on the road walking, I roll my window down to talk to them, and they do not runaway afraid. They just continue doing whatever it is they were doing.