How to Hunt Coyotes | Predator Hunting Techniques and Scent Elimination Tactics for a Successful Coyote Hunt
There are lots of reasons to hunt coyotes… Too many can negatively impact the population of desirable game species like deer and turkey; They have quite a knack for terrorizing livestock; They are susceptible to carrying several diseases; The list goes on, but simply put, it’s just plain fun, and spring is one of the best times to hunt coyotes you’ll get all year! The mating season typically runs from mid January through March, and the fawning and hatching seasons occur later in May and June, offering the coyote hunter several great opportunities. While all of this will work in your favor, putting down an Eastern coyote is no picnic. Here are several predator hunting techniques and scent elimination tactics you should master to have a successful coyote hunt.
Whether you’re interested in how to hunt coyotes in the day or how to hunt coyotes at night, one of the most important ingredients for a successful hunt is wind direction and ideally, scent elimination. If you’ve ever been winded by a coyote before and seen his reaction, you know how drastically human scent will affect what that coyote will do. It DOES NOT MATTER how good of a caller you are. Even if you’ve practiced every predator calling technique or you have the perfect call sequence programmed on your electronic coyote call; If he smells you, he’s out of there! This is true from the moment you step foot out of the truck until there is a dead coyote(s) in the field. Your parking location, your access route, and your setup are all opportunities for coyotes to detect your presence. Give yourself the best possible chance for success, and choose an entry route and setup position that gives you a sight and wind advantage. When it’s just not possible to get that advantage, you have no choice but to rely on a hunting scent eliminator.
Several companies in recent years have taken the idea of cover scents to the next level by developing fast drying, carbon based scent sprays. While some sprays do have an effect on what the animals smell, or don’t smell, there is very little field evidence to prove the scent has actually been eliminated. Even the best scent elimination sprays cannot totally eliminate scent and often have other negative ingredients like UV brighteners, etc… Ozonics was the first real scent elimination company to offer electronic scent elimination for hunting. The idea was totally proprietary to the hunting industry, and as with any innovation that defies what we’ve known to be true, there was skepticism. Check out these Ozonics scent eliminator reviews to see what real hunters are saying now! By creating a tool small enough to fit in the palm of your hand or easily in any size hunting pack, Ozonics has quickly become known for producing the deadliest scent elimination products for hunting on the market. How does this apply to coyote hunting? Here’s a great testimony sent to us just last week by Will Jimeno about his first NJ song dog.
“I recently had the opportunity to field test the new Ozonics kinetic pack while on a predator hunt for a coyote. Here in NJ it is pretty tough to harvest coyotes since they use the timber to their advantage to wind hunters. I have been trying to harvest a coyote for 3 years here in NJ and even though I have seen them, their nose always saves their lives. This was not the case for this coyote as on March 5th as I was using the Ozonics kinetic pack and not two minutes into my call sequence this nice male came in from my downwind side but my scent was eliminated by my Ozonics unit, which I wore in my kinetic pack so he never new I was there. This coyote came from over 400 yards away to 50 yards in front of me and I had my first NJ song dog! Thanks Ozonics for creating the kinetic pack, it will change predator hunting forever.” - Will Jimeno
The best way to kill coyotes is to be scent free. Once you’ve accomplished that, the rest is easy, relatively speaking. Scout areas for coyote hunting while you’re out shed hunting or turkey hunting this spring or use a locator call to know if any coyotes are in the immediate area. Approach that area, as we said, from the downwind side and set up so that you have a good vantage point. We like to give ourselves plenty of time to set up and the woods time to rest once we’ve reached our vantage point. Take the time to get everything ready to go as if a coyote is going to come barreling over the hill 2 minutes into your call sequence…You never know! Select a call based on the time of year and your location. During the mating season, female vocalizations and male challenge calls can be very effective. Experiment with different vocalizations and do your best to mimic what a real coyote sounds like. Towards the fawning and hatching seasons, mix your calls up with some more distress sounds depending on what is most prevalent in your area. Fawn, calf, poult and rabbit distress calls all work very well this time of year.
Check state regulations where you hunt to see if hunting coyotes at night is legal. Coyotes are mostly nocturnal creatures and are far more likely to respond to calls under the cover of darkness. Red lights and/or night vision scopes give the hunter a great advantage and may yield the best way to hunt coyotes. Set up the same way you would during the day, keeping scent elimination and wind direction a priority. Continuously scan the fields with your light until you see eyes. Once you have located a coyote, DO NOT take the light off that canine. Keep still until he closes the distance and take your shot once he’s within range.
While these may be coyote hunting tips for beginners, they are the basis of any successful predator hunt and should be given great value. We hope you’ll get to do some coyote hunting this spring and that you’ll consider your scent elimination methods for only for coyotes, but for any species you will be hunting through out the year.