New Coyote Dog Off to a Good Start

A cooperative coyote helped young pup Sully get off to a good start on an early but the first of many hunting trips.

New Coyote Dog Off to a Good Start

A few weeks back I introduced you to my newest hunting partner, Sully. Summer is an extremely busy time of year as I’m pushing assignments out the door to allow me time in the field during autumn hunting seasons. That’s why I typically hunt coyotes during the winter.

Even so, I wanted to get Sully on a couple of hunts before I disappeared for fall. Our first two outings were busts as we went head to head with adult coyotes. The coyotes in my area are well educated and numbers are kept in check with aerial gunners to keep populations at acceptable numbers for livestock producers. The coyotes would howl back, but not advance.

Our third outing faired better as I targeted a pasture with plenty of howling indicating pups were in the vicinity. Sully, Sage and I slipped into position well before shooting light. I knew we’d sneaked past the coyote security team because they started howling right near us just before daybreak without a hint of fear in their yipping. It was almost too much for Sully as I had to wrangle him back to my side to wait for shooting light.

When shooting light arrived, I used my diaphragm call to shout out the sounds of a lone coyote howling. Nothing returned my howls, so after 10 minutes I screamed the sounds of a fawn in distress. The sun was still not up, but I saw the dark shape of a coyote darting through the tall sagebrush about 150 yards to my left. Sage caught sight of the coyote and leaped from my side with Sully following full steam ahead.

Generally, coyotes circle around the dogs, but this coyote must have had an Ivy League education as it just kept trotting away through the tall cover, never giving me a shot. Sage barked a few good-byes and Sully whined as they crisscrossed in front of me hoping the coyote would come back. I wished it would as well and as I did a quick check of the area I was shocked to see another coyote already on scene!

This coyote was mesmerized by the antics of the two border collies trying to tease the departing coyote back. Neither dog saw this coyote and I suspect it was due to the fact it was sitting quietly down in creek bottom. My sniper perch allowed me the perfect view and I slowly swiveled my rifle to get on target. The coyote was so enthralled with the dogs, it never saw my move that included repositioning my shooting sticks.

I didn’t take in too much of the experience knowing full well coyotes rarely sit anywhere long. With my Sig Sauer riflescope dialed up to 18 power, my confidence was oozing as I sent a Match bullet downrange. The coyote piled up and dog crew hustled to the scene. Sage was a bit ho-hum about another dead coyote, but Sully took it all in with a bit of nervous apprehension. Even so, the seed was planted as what our goal is when the calling starts.

We tried another setup a few days later that was a slam dunk, except for one obstacle. I was shooting through a fence at a coyote 186 yards away and somehow hit the fence with my bullet. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it! I have a busy big game schedule of hunting ahead, but I’m looking forward to getting Sully into more coyotes when the snow flies.


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