Author Rich Cronk
Coyotes are ornery critters that kill for a living. Oh yes, there are those big city coyotes that scrounge residential neighborhoods for scraps of food, but I am betting that they love the pet puppies and kittens that live in those cities a lot better than the garbage they manage to scrounge up. I have called coyotes away from the meat of dead livestock that they had been gorging themselves on, and I know that many other callers have done the same. Coyotes will eat anything that is remotely edible, and some things that don't even seem to be edible. The fact however, is that coyotes prefer fresh meat.
During the summer months, Mom and Pop coyote teach their pups how to hunt small animals for food. It is during this time period that pups learn to associate the screams of distressed critters with food. The frantic screams of a dying rabbit or bird, the pleading bawls of a distressed fawn or lamb. These frantic cries are the sound of a dinner bell to a coyote.
Hunters who learn to imitate the sound of a distressed critter, has learned a very important lesson. When a coyote hears this sound, there is a very good chance that the coyote will come to investigate. It matters not which little critter screams or bawls that the hunter imitates while in hearing distance of coyotes. The coyote does not know or care which type of critter it hears screaming. To the coyote, it is just lunch.
There are probably more coyotes called with rabbit screams than any other sound. Pick the most frantic and pain filled screams that you can find, as this will yield your best results. When using a mouth blown call, don't worry about sounding exactly like a rabbit. Just make the screams sound like a small critter that is hurting really bad.
Not even the best of callers can call coyotes where there are no coyotes to call. Ask the land owner if he has been hearing them howl, or has been seeing coyotes on the property. When scouting a new area for coyotes, look for tracks and droppings around water holes, fence corners, cow paths and etc. In farm country you will find the coyotes in or near cover that holds rabbits and Game birds. When choosing a spot from which to call, try to choose a high spot in the terrain where you can see the coyotes approach. I like to call from a sitting position, and I prefer to have my back up against a tree, a rock, a bush, or even a fence post. I plan to be on stand for 15 minutes, so I always sit on a cushion for comfort. I almost always wear a camo jacket, and it is my belief that a hunter's hands and face should be covered while calling. I prefer to call while facing a cross-wind, and keep a close watch on my down-wind side. Coyotes love to circle down-wind of the screams before final approach. When using an electronic caller, I try to place the caller up-wind of the cover where I believe the coyotes are holed up. I like to sit cross-wind of the caller some fifty yards or so. The coyotes often approach from down-wind of the caller instead of down-wind of ME.
Farm country coyotes like to spend their daylight hours in the thickest, most remote cover they can find. Placing an electronic caller upwind of a cedar thicket, or the head of a brush choked valley has helped me whack a lot of coyotes. I think it will help you also.