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Grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars/ mountain lions,bobcats, wolverines, lynx, foxes, fishers and martens are the suite of carnivores that originally inhabited North America after the Pleistocene extinctions. This site invites research, commentary, point/counterpoint on that suite of native animals (predator and prey) that inhabited The Americas circa 1500-at the initial point of European exploration and subsequent colonization. Landscape ecology, journal accounts of explorers and frontiersmen, genetic evaluations of museum animals, peer reviewed 20th and 21st century research on various aspects of our "Wild America" as well as subjective commentary from expert and layman alike. All of the above being revealed and discussed with the underlying goal of one day seeing our Continent rewilded.....Where big enough swaths of open space exist with connective corridors to other large forest, meadow, mountain, valley, prairie, desert and chaparral wildlands.....Thereby enabling all of our historic fauna, including man, to live in a sustainable and healthy environment. - Blogger Rick

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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Georgia Ecological Research Center and University of Georgia researchers conducted a 5 year 2007-2012 study of the dietary habits of Coyotes in the Joseph Jones Research Center in southwestern Georgia.............The ever adaptable Coyote, like Man, opportunistic and flexible in it's foodstuff choices, dining on everything from rodents, rabbits, raccoons, opossums, bobcats, gray foxes, skunks, various birds,vegetation, agricultural crops and human garbage ...........How much direct predation on deer and other larger mammals was not directly observed and the authors of the study used language that came across to me as biased and anti-coyote, reaching a verdict of guilty rather than suggesting more research was needed to evaluate the "dampening" potential when Coyotes and Deer exist together in Georgia woodlands


Coyote diets in a longleaf pine ecosystem

Michael J. Cherry Kelsey L. Turner M. Brent Howze Bradley S. Cohen L. Mike Conner and Robert J. Warren
M. J. Cherry () and L. M. Conner, Joseph W. Jones Ecological Research Center, Wildlife Ecology Lab, 3988 Jones Center Drive, Newton, GA 39870, USA.

K. L. Turner, M. B. Howze, B. S. Cohen and R. J. Warren, Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, Univ. of Georgia, 180 E Green Street, Athens, GA 30602-2152, USA

The ecological implications of coyote Canis latrans colonization of the eastern USA have drawn considerable interest from land managers and the general public. The ability to predict how these ecosystems, which have lacked larger predators for decades, would respond to the invasion of this highly adaptable species needs an understanding of coyote foraging behavior given local resource availability.

Therefore, we examined the diet of coyotes in a longleaf pine Pinus palustrusecosystem from 2007–2012. We examined 673 coyote scats collected on the Joseph W. Jones Ecological Research Center in southwestern Georgia. We observed considerable seasonality in coyote use of rodents, white-tailed deer Odocoileus virginianus, rabbits and vegetation.

 Coyotes exploited anthropogenic food sources, particularly waste peanuts Arachis hypogaea, during the fall and winter when native soft mast was not available. Adult white-tailed deer were consumed during every month and was not limited to the pulse of carrion availability from hunter-harvested animals, suggesting the use of adult white-tailed deer may not be restricted to scavenging in this system.

Predation of Fawn or scavenged Fawn?

 We found mesomammals, including armadillosDasypus novemcinctus, raccoons Procyon lotor, Virginia opossums Didelphis viginiana, bobcats Lynx rufus, grey foxesUrocyon cineroargenteus and striped skunks Mephitis mephitis in approximately 18% of coyote scats from January–August.

 On our site, and some adjacent properties, the use of predator trapping focused primarily on Virginia opossum, raccoon, coyote, bobcat and gray fox, to increase northern bobwhite Colinus virginianus production may have resulted in increased use of mesomammals through scavenging. We offer evidence that coyote colonization may alter food web dynamics in longleaf pine ecosystems through depredation of white-tailed deer and by influencing the mesomammal guild through direct predation and competition for rodents, rabbits, carrion and soft mast.
Accepted: December 7, 2015;


Anonymous said...

Soooooo, deer predation by coyotes is a BAD thing? We NEED natural deer predators in the East! MY only beef with coyotes is that they ARE NOT very efficient deer predators--all the typical coyote can handle(usually) is fawns, when they can find them(which never is easy for ANY predator), and perhaps very old, seriously wounded, or otherwise debilitated adults. My hopes are that the New Red Wolves(Coywolves!) will be more effective deer hunters, and that they will eventually dominate over the smaller, more "pure" coyotes in the East. And with that savvy coyote heritage, be able to survive better next to intolerant humans like the ones who wiped out the original Eastern Red Wolves. And, even more, let's hope the cougars expanding eastward establish some breeding populations in the East--now THAT'S the supreme deer predator we need!.....L.B.

Rick Meril said...

LB................As most often, we share a similar sentiment............All for whatever admix Coyote/wolf roams our woodlands...........Hope that the Red Wolf also can somehow be inserted into this canid mix so that deer and rodents are tapped down