Seventeen Coyotes Make for a Great Beginning! Christmas Edition


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Those of you have read some of my stories know that I have two coyote hunting dogs, Bubba and Dash; they’re both Mountain Curs. Bubba has been with me for 9 seasons and on hundreds of coyotes.

This is Dash’s fourth season and he hopes to catch up some day.

I normally begin coyote hunting when furs prime, usually around November 15th here in Montana. We are fortunate in that the Northern Supreme coyote is worth much more than coyotes elsewhere in the country so I don’t shoot coyotes until they prime up. That is unless a rancher calls asking for my assistance in getting rid of problem.

I also like taking rather long excursions, 1968 Holiday Rambler trailer in tow, to places I’ve never been before. This year is no exception.

I’ve been seeing a lot of road-killed coyotes and was eager to get after it, so on November 14, we take off (Bubba and I) to places that will remain un-named. I have no qualms about driving 2-300 miles to a good spot, parking the camper and hunting from there. Many times I’ve hunted an area for 2-3 days then pack up and move back towards home. It’s amazing how much country you can cover over a 10 day period doing this. Ten days you say! Yep, I’m a wildlife biologist by training but my career branched into the wildland firefighting realm many years ago and now I spend all of my summers fighting fire. Unlike many of you who plan family vacations during the summer, I plan my vacations for when the snow is on the ground and we’ve had a “season ending event”. This year that event didn’t come until late October.

The first day of hunting season found us in 4 inches of fluffy, dry snow. Perfect for calling and Bubba was more than reading to get the show on the road. Unfortunately, I failed to check with the coyotes because they didn’t appear to have read the forecast! The skies were clear, not a breath of wind, good tracking snow and sounds carried for miles and the coyotes didn’t want anything to do with us. We hunted hard all day long and finally at the last stand a pair decides to come in to my pitiful pleas. They were no dummies though and began circling at 200+ yards. Of course this isn’t even considered a long shot for the mighty Swift, and once the male stopped to check out Bubba, coyote #1 for the 2012/13 season was in the bag. Yippee…

We hunt hard for the next 3 days and all I get for it is some nice pictures. Coyotes don’t respond and when they do, I miss.

Here’s a cool looking fenceline. Notice the early morning rays on the fence poles, oh, and the lack of relief in the landscape.

And how about this one; it’s kind of sparkly.

Let’s see how good you are at identifying your birds. What’s this?

Maybe this picture will help.

I can’t figure this one out?

One last bird picture, care to take a stab at these?

That was it, four days of hunting, one coyote, some artsy photo’s (I was bored) and Bubba’s feet were so sore from running in the snow that he got to stay in the truck on the last day. The weather forecast was for wind and lots of it, so we head home.

What does 17 coyotes have to do with this story you ask? Well, keep coming back over the next few days and see how the saga plays itself out.
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Those bins look like wind damage to me, Mike. Once in a while we have something like that happen here in KS. Looks like you are living the dream, have fun with it.
Man...those are 2 good looking dogs! Bubba is especially a truely beautiful dog. Looking forward to more stories from you!
Wow great pics!!

The bins are wind damage for sure.. I'm guessing the two that have no damage are full of grain

Can't wait for more of the pics!!
Originally Posted By: mikegranger
I can’t figure this one out?

yep that's what you get with a strong wind... most newer bins have wind rings, makes the bin walls more ridged.
Quote:The first bird looks like a Yellowhammer, or Flicker.

Definately not. An annciperter I believe and am thinking Cooper's hawk.

Snow bunting on the others.
Originally Posted By: Yellowhammer Quote:The first bird looks like a Yellowhammer, or Flicker.

Definately not. An annciperter I believe and am thinking Cooper's hawk.

Snow bunting on the others.

Yep Snow Bunting for sure. I can't tell if it's a Coopers hawk or a Sharp-Shinned from the picture. Good pictures.
Bingo, Yellowhammer and Venatic get the prize!

The prairie color phase of the Merlin and Snow Buntings. I was very adept at calling in snow buntings. They would come in huge flocks. Later you'll see a picture of a coyote on a hill with a flock of flying snow buntings in the foreground.

I also had a prairie falcon swoop me and almost knock my hat off. That was kinda cool.