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  1. #1
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    2018 coyote count started today

    I got a pair of coyotes today. We had a heifer prematurely abort a calf today and I saw a coyote circling trying to get at the calf while feeding. I got a clear angle and dropped it at 220yds with my 25-06 and a 100gr Ballistic tip. It was sitting on it's butt and broadside looking at the heifer.

    I got done in time to make 3 sets calling after work. The first came up empty, and I screwed up the second. I got up after 19 minutes thinking the stand was over and wanting to get 2 more sets in before dark, and a coyote immediately started barking. He may have been an educated one that wouldn't commit, or just a late one. I barked back and mimicked him for several minutes until he went silent, and then sat for another 10 minutes in case he snuck in. I ran a real quiet vole squeak for a few seconds, off for a minute, 10 seconds just in case I could make him curious enough to pop out.

    I had time for one quick set after that and set up prone on a terrace overlooking a big brome field. I had the call 60yds out from me. I howled right off since time was short, then did 3 minutes of vole squeaks on low volume. I then went to a kiyi and got a female to show up. She was going to circle really wide of me as she showed up while the call was on mute. I got it off mute before she got downwind and she came in at a run. I shot her 21yds from the call when she finally hit the brakes. She was quartering toward me and the 25-06 made a mess on the exit after penetrating that much coyote. I thought shots might be getting long for the AR since I'm hunting spots I've already hunted and coyotes are getting smarter now so I went to the bigger gun. Today had plenty of wind too. I might have to go back to the AR though, the guy I give my coyotes too would appreciate smaller holes than the second one had. I could load up some more 100gr Sirocco II bullets too, those seem to drop coyotes without the big holes but they are a pretty expensive bullet for coyotes and foul the rifle pretty quick.

    I ended up with 36 total for 2017, I missed a 180yd shot with the AR a few days before the new year. I had a coyote sneak in from an unexpected angle and spotted him sitting there at last light. I had to make a big move and got spotted. He didn't leave but I didn't know if I could make another move into a more comfortable shooting position. I ended up shooting while leaning backward holding myself with my core muscles, not leaning forward into the bipod like I prefer. I pulled the shot to the right I think. I was due for a miss, I was 10 for 10 with the AR before that. I can shoot but I can't call that streak exactly normal.

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  3. #2
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    Always like your yote stories. The calf incident reminds me of a time I was bowhunting near the edge of a pasture and I could see a cow that had a stuck calf. The coyotes were eating the calf while half of it was still in the cow. Most barbaric thing I have ever seen.

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  5. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by buckbull View Post
    Always like your yote stories. The calf incident reminds me of a time I was bowhunting near the edge of a pasture and I could see a cow that had a stuck calf. The coyotes were eating the calf while half of it was still in the cow. Most barbaric thing I have ever seen.
    Thanks, I like telling them once it gets dark and I can't be out shooting them! I think I'm going to head out again about 4, got ranch chores done pretty early today.

    When I was just old enough to ride my own horse and not slow Dad down I remember riding with him at daylight one morning checking cows during calving. We spooked a group of coyotes out of a draw as we rode up. Down in the draw a cow had been trying to calve and the calf was really big. She was paralyzed on the back half and couldn't stand up and the coyotes had been eating on her. It was really gruesome, and made me understand why Dad shot coyotes every chance he got. I've seen similar situations a few times over the years but luckily not for a long while. As the cattle genetics have improved and become easier to track calving issues like that have become really uncommon for us.

    After a ranch a few miles west of us sold all their sheep the coyotes concentrated there needed a new food source. Some of them showed up at our place during calving I think. Those coyotes had a system to distract the llamas they used for coyote control in the sheep pastures. The smaller female coyote would distract the llama while the bigger male drug the lamb off the other direction. I shot the male coyote out of 2 pairs that spring as they tried to do that with cows and calves. Both times the cow had calved on top of a ridge where dragging the calf a short distance off the back side got it out of sight and headed downhill where it was easier to drag faster. The problem has diminished with time as those coyotes have died out, but it still happens. I'm glad we never had a larger pack figure it out.

    I have lots of stories like that. Coyotes are an amazingly intelligent and adaptable animal I can't help but respect. I can't blame coyotes for being coyotes or hate them for doing what they have adapted to do, but they sure need kept in check. I was listening to an old podcast on my phone while waiting for a water tank to fill this morning where they interviewed the coyote calling champion Al Morris. He said that even if 75% of the adult coyotes are removed from an area in a year, the remaining 25% can have enough pups to put the total number of adults the following year back to the same. I read a study years ago that universities in TX, NE, and ND if I remember right did that said the same thing except they came up with 80%. Guess I better keep shooting them!

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    Well I'm up to 5 now for 2018.

    I called a week ago Saturday with a couple guys on ground they had permission on. I even got to take the whole day, my wife volunteered to run the feed truck out and fed cows in the morning. My daughter is 2.5 and starting to like to go with my wife or I so she can give the cows orders, sing them songs, everything 2yr olds do. It's pretty hilarious at times.

    I killed a hard charger with the AR on the 2nd stand of the morning. It hung up on the first sound at a half mile out of sight from me. As soon as I changed sounds the guy who was watching it said it came as hard as it could. I finally got it barked at enough to stop it about 20yds from the call, 80yds from me. I shot it in the chest and dropped it. The wind kept changing on us and a couple stands later it switched at the wrong time and we had a pair sit down and bark at us from the timber, they smelled us and never showed. They barked and I barked back at them trying to get them to go up the hill on the far side and look at least. It didn't work. It seldom does at that point for me. The next stand got a real old male to come in to rabbit distress. The guys I was with aren't nearly as particular about finding cover to call from as I usually am and one of the guys got spotted on an open hillside moving his rifle. He made a great 300yd shot when the coyote stopped and took a look though after spooking. Things slowed down for a while during the middle of the day but mid afternoon we got a group of 4 to come in. One came hard to the call and 3 started circling downwind at 350yds. I wanted to get a shot at one of the far ones while one of the other guys took the close one but it didn't work out. The far ones went out of sight and the hard charger kept coming. One of the other guys and I both shot at the same time, dropped him about 12yds from the call, 40yds from me. We ended up having 8 respond and killing 3. We never missed one, just had the two smell us and the 4 come in together that didn't work out for multiples.

    This afternoon I spotted a coyote from my driveway when heading in from doing chores. I grabbed the 204 from the house and got a good rest on my flatbed that was parked out front. I dropped him when he stopped at my bark with the 40gr Superformance load I was shooting the other day. I have had some bad luck with that bullet so I seldom use it on coyotes anymore, but it sure drops them when you miss bone and hit vitals. That's what I happened to have the 204 dialed with right now instead of the usual 45gr SP ammo. I ranged the coyote after at 337yds. There wasn't enough wind to have to hold for that. The little V max at 3900fps gets right out there, I held top of the back with a 2" high at 100yd zero and hit about 3" below the spine.

    I put a different scope on my AR last week. I went with a Leupold 3.5-10x40 VX3i with the B&C reticle. My 223 load isn't fast enough to match up with the varmint or predator reticles very well so I went this route. I zeroed it at 1.5" high at 100yds, then put it on a friend's bench and shot his 300yd target and fine tuned my zero so my 300yd crosshair was right last Saturday. Sunday at home I shot it at paper and horizontal water bottles at 80-200yds and made sure I didn't have to much mid-range rise. Then I got out the new bouncing polymer targets I bought and practiced sitting off the Rapid Pivot hitting them. It was darn good practice, trying to keep 2 of them rolling at the same time about 30yds apart is probably not great on AR barrels though. I let it cool after the first 10rd mag, then shot slower on the next couple. Those targets are lots of fun and darn hard to beat for shooting practice.

    This evening my daughter and I watched an old Les Johnson video I bought on Ebay. Every time a coyote would come in she would holler "there comes one" and when they shot it she'd say "got him Daddy". It was fun. She got out her toy AR and shot my coyote decoy when we got done while blowing on one of my old closed reed calls. We have to much fun when mom goes on a work trip.

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  9. #5
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    I have gotten, 32 on the trapline this year. Snares and footholds. Pulling the last of the sets tonight

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  12. #6
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    Shot 4 today, partners killed 3. Hunted a contest and one guy got 3 singles early in the day, I got a triple on one stand. They came in together and I killed one at 60yds when they came in hard, rolled the 2nd at 120yds and the third at 170 as it bailed out. The 2nd two were running wide open and I was lucky and my lead was right. I was stoked to say the least. I used my 243 with 85gr bullets after we lost one hit with the AR. It wasn't the AR's fault but I stuck with what was working. I got another later in the day at 90yds at a dead run also. Best day of calling I'd ever had. It's so much fun when things go right. We had 10 respond and crippled and lost one, despite hitting him with a 243 and AR, and missed one. It got to the mid 60's today and it got slow once it warmed up.

    My AR is still my gun of choice but the 243 is the killer once the wind picks up. The bullets I use have been backordered for months so I started the week with 12, had 9 left for the hunt after checking the zero. I sure hope they come back soon.
    Last edited by mcseal2; 01-27-2018 at 11:17 PM.

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  14. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by hunttrap View Post
    I have gotten, 32 on the trapline this year. Snares and footholds. Pulling the last of the sets tonight
    That's doing darn good. I haven't trapped much in recent years since I love calling them so much but used to with my Grandpa. Trapping is definitely the best way currently available to drop coyote numbers. Trapping teaches you valuable lessons that carry over to all methods of control, but I can't touch the results the trappers around here can reach.
    Last edited by mcseal2; 01-27-2018 at 11:18 PM.

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  16. #8
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    What bullet are you looking for that 243?

  17. #9
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    Nailed another one in a Snare when I pulled them the other night. Had a person contact me about setting in the grove, where they are harassing their horses. Id suspect I'll have a few more as the week progresses.

  18. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by billdoe708 View Post
    What bullet are you looking for that 243?
    85gr Speer SPBT. It has a pretty darn good ballistic coefficient at .380 and doesn't tear up a coyote as bad as a 87gr V max.

 

 
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