December 22, 2012

Coyote School is Moving


My frequent visitors will have noticed I haven't been doing much posting in the last while, even though it is the heart of coyote season. There's a reason, and from my perspective it's a good one. I've in effect sold this blog to a major hunting organization and will now be doing a similar predator blog for them on their website. So, after two years of independent on-line presence, this blog is now going legit. In keeping with that development most of the old Coyote School content will be taken down.

While this will effectively be my last post here, the blogging will continue in the same format, just in a different location. The site is that of the North American Hunting Club and I'll be joining a group of bloggers that includes well known writers like Ron Spomer, Richard Mann and even Jeff Foxworthy.

Thank you to all the loyal readers who have followed along in the last two year's adventures. Be assured that Coyote School is not closed, it's just moved to a different location, with a name change. Here's the link that goes straight to the new blog, called The Predator Professor. We're still going to chase predators all winter, other assorted varmints in the summer and test new and interesting gear. I encourage you to make the move and bookmark the new blog site. The North American Hunting Club website is extensive and there's a ton of other good content there too. Be sure to look around.

Thanks for your support.

Al

December 12, 2012

A Coyote Outfitter

There are lots of guides and outfitters here in Alberta and they all have particular areas and game species they specialize in. Some even include coyotes as one of their available hunts. Venture North Outfitting is one of the few that does this and since I've known and worked with them for a number of years, I thought it might be time to recommend them to any of my readers who are looking for a guided coyote hunt in Alberta.

November 24, 2012

Strange Day

Yesterday looked like a good day to chase coyotes, so I joined up a with a newbie coyote hunter who I've been promising to take out. It turned out to be a strange day in that the morning was a complete bust while the afternoon was good. The end result was that he managed to see both the high's and the low's of coyote hunting. 

We did four stands over the course of the morning, hitting places that are always prime spots for coyotes and that I haven't been to at all this year. All we got for the trouble, were four nice walks and the opportunity to look over some nice snow covered fields. I couldn't believe the lack of success, but then I've been doing this long enough to know that sometimes coyote hunting is like fishing....there are days you can't buy a bite.

At noon we decided to fish from the other side of the boat and made a major location change. It payed off in that we took coyotes on three out of four stands. Go figure.

November 21, 2012

Buying Success


Coyote season has started and I'm home sick and popping antibiotics. What a drag! I've been so under the weather I didn't have the energy to write let alone hunt. So, you know it's been bad. Things are on the mend however and now I'm feeling well enough to get a little philosophical...

When I first started hunting coyotes seriously, I always seemed to overestimate how far away 200 and 300 yard dogs were and thus shoot over the critters. They’d run off laughing as I smacked myself on the forehead in frustration over what I’d done—again. I think it was a combination of my inexperience and the flat featureless snow, hunters contend with in this part of the world. But, darn it, those dogs just kept “looking” like they were further away than they really were.

November 5, 2012

Losing My Mind

The day after I was out for my annual Landowner Day I stacked up some optics to give them a good cleaning. Except for an inability to locate my laser rangefinder, the job went smoothly. A thorough search of my man-cave and the truck turned up only a half-eaten granola bar. That made the rangefinder officially missing and necessitated searching my memory banks next.

I'd had it out on Landowner Day and recalled the exact location of the last use. I figured there was a good bet it was on the ground right where I'd been sitting. But it was already too dark to drive out for a look, so I relegated that trip to a Sunday afternoon chore; right after my son-in-law's birthday party.

He came along and since there's no point in driving out to coyote country without a gun, we took two. Our first stop was to look for the rangefinder. It was there alright, a little wet but fully functional and waiting patiently to go back into a warm pocket. I'd used it, set it on the ground for handy re-use and then eventually walked away from it. Careless...dumb...etc.

 
However, with little effort or time expended in looking for lost gear, we had enough time to go look for a coyote.

November 2, 2012

Landowner Day

I set aside one day at the start of every season to touch base with landowners for the coming year and  to scout for some new spots. That was today. If you hunt anything, you likely know how important hunter/landowner relations are. That's true for coyote hunting as well. We coyote hunters do have it a little easier than some hunters because cattle/sheep/pig/chicken/turkey farmers all have little use for coyotes. So,we normally get a warmer reception than some other hunters. Still, you have to look after those relationships.

I break my hunting area up into two zones and do Landowner Day for one zone in early November and the other zone I do about a month later. It all has to do with the timing of deer season around here. Of course, all my hunting gear is in the truck on Landowner Day, just in case I run across something worth shooting. Good thing...

October 25, 2012

Averages

I ventured out for the first coyote hunt of the season yesterday morning. Following a routine I've established over the last few years I hit a spot that will be overrun by deer hunters within a few days. It gets a lot of hunting pressure, so the coyotes tend to be call shy and hunter smart after deer season. Combine that with the fact it's almost impossible to get into this area once the snow gets deep and you can see why I only hit it early in the season.

Since it's the first hunt/lesson in this season's Coyote School this is also a good time to talk about a question I get asked occassionally. It's usually experessed as, "How many stands should I be averaging in order to bag one coyote?"

While this is a little like asking "How far is up?" I think we can take a shot at an answer.