Monday, September 3, 2012
Eastern Coyote Hunt
Shortly after 7AM Becky appeared, moving in stealth mode, to get the camera. She had seen two of the coyote pups running flat out down the path. Standing soundlessly in the bedroom window, we watched as first one then the other made a cat like pounce into the tall grass. One of them came up holding a dark rodent between its teeth.
Much playing with the food followed. Keep away was popular. Both coyotes snapped at each other with their heads side by side while facing in the same direction. They seemed to be learning adult behavior but the feigned bites were aimed at the air. These games continued for several minutes. Neither Becky nor I actually saw the meal eaten. We do not know if the meal was shared or if one ate the whole thing.
Ed decided to go outside to try for a closer picture and to check the now older pups reaction to him. Both coyotes ran for the bushes the moment they saw Ed. The first to run gave no audible signal to the second. Ed was able to move closer using the sod pile as a screen. The second pup bolted the moment it saw Ed. It is a comfort to know that these wild animals will now quickly run away from us. An earlier attempt to chase these animals away ended in a close standoff.
This was not their first visit to the garden last night. The remaining lettuce shade cover had been ripped from the cage and torn to bits. We need to shade the lettuce from the hot summer sun but the pups run across the covered cages caving them in. The only workable solution is to leave the cages uncovered for now. The pups have learned to run away from people. We view that as an important lesson. Bouncing on the lettuce covers is only an annoyance. Watching these sleek wild animals up close is a wonderful experience. Want a closer look? Click on the picture!