I hunt them probably more than any other animal. Except for maybe quail.
Pelts are nice to have around for decoration.
Get 6-7 and have a blanket made.
If you tie your own fishing flies, the guard hair works well for hair wing salmon flies and the underfur dubs a pretty mean coyote hair nymph.
You can still get $15-20/each from the fur buyer if they're nice. A seasons worth might pay for a new rifle if you're lucky.
It's a lot of fun and good practice for other kinds of hunting.
It's what you do after you've driven 3.5 hours to Wister and are #127 in the sweat line.
Don't eat them though. I eat just about everything I shoot but this is one exception. I tried once. A friend and I shot a very young, tender and clean coyote. We took the backstraps and tried them on the grill. It's the only thing I've had that tastes worse than it smells.
I hear you... they're pretty bad. I shot a coyote and a bobcat in the same day out in the desert near Wister one year. Skined them both and left the remains in a spot I could find later. Couple of days later the bobcat remains were completely gone and the coyote, which was only 5ft away, was still exactly as I had left it. Came back three weeks later and it was still there.
Eating one is definitely something I will only try once.
Hang the coyote upside down by a hind leg at eye level. Cut the skin right along the inseam. Up one side and down the other. You'll notice the line pretty well marked by the darker fur that's on their top side and the lighter fur on their underside.
Once you have this cut made it's a matter of pulling it downwards. It comes off pretty much just like a shirt. You shouldn't need a knife - read "don't use one", until you cut the front feet at the ankles and around thier ears, nose and mouth.
You'd be surprised at how much pulling and tugging you can subject a coyote hide to. Unless there's a bullet hole in the particular spot, it's pretty hard if not impossible to tear one.
Once you get it off, wash it and put it on a hide stretcher. They're cheap and you can get them from several trapping supply places listed in Trapper and Predator Caller Magazine.
If you do it right this is what you end up with (those are stretchers to my left in the pictures).
After you've skinned then and put them on the stretcher, they dry pretty hard and stiff. You get them to that soft pliable feel by sending them to the processing house and getting them tanned. Normally somewhere between $15-50 per pelt depending on who does it, how many you send, what kind of animal, etc.
The face came be made just as soft, or even softer than the rest. When you send it to the processor you need to specify either "garment grade" or "taxidermy grade". Taxidermy grade just has the hide thinned more than the garment so that it can be worked easier around the face, etc. when you're getting a lifesize mount. Garment grade is left thicker and therefore more durable but I've never seen any tanned hide rip.
Re: places in SoCal - just about anywhere. High desert and the Imperial Valley always do well for me. I've had a few days out at Wister where I called in 10 or more in a day. That's pretty rare but it always helps to call where there are lots of coyotes. Calling 10 is a lot different than shooting 10 though so don't think that all those end up on stretchers...
tinner - any rifle will do the job as a general rule. I have a very bad habit of shooting coyotes more than about anything else so I have more than a couple "coyote" rifles. My favorite is a Ruger #1B in .243. I also shoot a Winchester M70 Featherweight in .22-250, a Ruger M77/22H in .22 Hornet, a TCR in .17 Mach IV and a Savage 24F .22 Hornet over a 12ga shotgun.
They all have a purpose (I'm still trying to justify them all)... but if I had only a simple bolt .223 it would still work just fine.
Why hunt coyotes? Well that's a good question. I’ll tell you why I hunt them, many years ago I worked as a guide for a private hunting lodge. The local coyote population was just starting to be a problem in my area, the owners of the lodge were losing game to coyotes. At the time I had just bought a 45 rpm rabbit in distress recording and a battery powered record player to play around with, I had no coyote calling experience what so ever. A few weeks after the player was bought I was lucky enough to guide a client from Texas that had hunted coyotes before, after tagging out on big game he wanted to go calling coyotes, something new in my area and me. We called in and killed five coyotes in two days, the lodge owners were so excited they gave him a bonus turkey hunt and wanted me to continue hunting the coyotes. I enjoyed it and earned a little money. After I moved on to another job coyote hunting stayed in my blood. Over the years I have found the coyote to be one of the most challenging animals to harvest. After seeing what a pack of coyotes can do to fawn deer, turkeys, goats, sheep, and calves I now know the damage that can be done to wildlife and domestic livestock. The coyote has few enemies other than man, predator hunting helps control the coyote population, I hope to do all I can. Besides, it’s better than setting around watching TV.
I live Glendale, two blocks from the base of the mountians and I see coyotes all the time, they eat all the cats in the neighbor hood ( I hate cats ) They are a pain but great to hunt. Do you use any oils on the skin when you strech it out.:shoot-aqua:
Coyotes are nothing but nasty varmints. They will eat neighborhood pets and anything they can get a hold of, including small children. I shoot them anytime it is legal when I see one. I don't have any pelts or anything. I do not wish to hunt them to extinction, which would be immpossible, but if you do not hunt them they will take over everything. That is why you do not need a tag to hunt them and there is no limit on them. Otherwise the Fish and Game would have to hunt them all the time.
Thonz - no oils or anything on the skins. When you put them on the stretchers you're pretty much just holding them in shape until they dry. The term "stretch" is somewhat of a misnomer. The skin dries hard - kind of like cardboard. They'll stay like that without spoiling for well over a year until you get them to the taxidermist. Make sure you get all the fat/meat off the hide though because if you don't it will cause the hair to slip.