Steve Grubb, with whom I’m in a small hunt club in Roanoke County, reported having a decent deer season, taking a couple decent bucks (he sent pix; they were pretty nice) and some does.
He killed this ‘yote in Pittsylvania County the last week of December.
Here’s his report:
“I am 6-1 and 210 pounds so you can see in the pic that it is full grown. We have had a problem with them down there for years. There is a huge dairy farm nearby that dumps their dead cows in a hole across the road from this farm and that’s the problem I am sure.
This critter was a 48-pound female which made it even better. No more pups for her. Earlier in the season I saw one the same size catch a mature hen turkey but couldn’t get a shot at it.
My buddy and I killed 8 mature does on his farm this year that were dry. Meaning they probably lost their fawns early in the spring. We are seeing very few young deer and most does don’t have any young with them. Don’t know what the answer is to this problem but its frustrating to say the least.”
There isn’t an easy answer to coyotes and it is frustrating. Some experts say that killing them doesn’t do any good on a widespread level. But I think there is ample evidence that a concerted hunting and/or trapping effort can make an impact on specific spots. Some also may say that coyotes are nature’s way of dealing with Virginia’s booming deer herd. While I think the herd did get out of hand I worry that, at least in some areas, coyotes are gaining an upper hand.
I am fortunate to have a number of spots to hunt within two hours of Roanoke. I can’t think of a single place, from the big ones to the little ones, where coyotes have not had an impact on the deer and turkey populations. Some places are worse than others. My logs from this past season from hunting spots in Roanoke, Alleghany, Botetourt and Bedford counties show that I saw far fewer fawns than usual.
The landowners are all well aware of this, which is why they all have encouraged the hunters to make killing coyotes a priority. In fact, I wonder if there is any landowner/hunter out there who hasn’t declared war on coyotes?
Over the last couple of weeks I have had several reader requests to do more on coyotes and coyote hunting. I plan to do my best. I am not an experienced coyote hunter but I have a number of friends and acquaintances who are, and they all have been on me to go out with them. I actually do have a good electronic call. My hope is to get some lessons so I can get after the ‘yotes on my own.