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Old 05-15-2012, 10:44 PM
 
Location: Canada
5,779 posts, read 6,691,169 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackShoe View Post
Not a coyote. Regardless of what the Wiki article said, no wild coyote ever remotely weighed 75 pounds. Pure coyotes weigh 20-35 on average, and a 40 pounder is considered very large and not common. The larger Eastern coyotes have proven to be wolf/coyote hydrids, Eastern wolf (Canis Lupus Lycaon) with coyotes. Claims to the contrary, the heaviest weighed by a reliable source was around 55 pounds, although there could be a 60 pounder somewhere. As for our unknown canine visitor, my best guess would be a large dog that was dumped and has now gone feral. As others have warned, this animal could prove to be very dangerous and unpredictable. One suggestion; would it be possible to obtain a scat sample of the animal, and if so, would the wildlife authorities be willing to go to the effort and expense of testing for dna, which would determine the species of the animal?
I was thinking that if it was a wolf, even an eastern wolf, they might be interested enough to try to determine what animal it is since there are no confirmed sightings of the eastern wolf in this province. So I would think it might be of interest to them.

I seriously doubt I will get close enough to him to take a sample when he takes a dump But I did think of that too, in an abstract, I'm-never-going-to-do-it way. I am hoping to get another paw print to document since that is the most puzzling thing of all - that it was more than 4 inches long, which my research tells me has to make it a wolf. That's almost twice as large as a coyote print.

I saw him today, trotting along the side of the ditch as I was on my way to somewhere else and I saw for the first time dark guard hairs over his back - he isn't as light as he appears in the photo. As soon as he saw the vehicle - he immediately angled off across the field. And he is just plain bigger than coyotes are - I talked to my vet, a Saskatchewan farm boy, who said no way a coyote would be bigger than my German shepherd.

No wild dogs around here either.

When he's finished seeding, my uncle is going to set up a trail cam and I'll see if I can get a better picture.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:48 PM
 
Location: Canada
5,779 posts, read 6,691,169 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cav Scout wife View Post
Could be a coydog. We normally have coyotes around here that get between the size of border collies and GSD's. The bigger ones are usually always coydogs.


I have personally shot and killed and skinned coyotes bigger than 40lbs that for all intent purposes were full coyote, and the bigger ones were coydogs.

I guess it's all dependent on the area where you are at. Around here, it's good land, decent temps, and TONS of chicken farms; so it's good living for coyotes and foxes. Heck the biggest fox I have seen was almost 43lbs (where around 30lbs is the high end of average).
No one I've talked to has ever heard of coydogs or abnormally large coyotes around here.

The foxes I have had here were in the 15 pound range.
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Old 05-15-2012, 11:38 PM
 
Location: Orange County, CA
3,730 posts, read 5,356,703 times
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Fox weights are often very overestimated. For example, if we took a 10 pound domestic tomcat and a 10 pound male red fox and stood them side by side next to each other the fox would appear to be the much larger animal. Foxes are lightly boned, are heavily furred, and have that long bushy tail that adds to the image.
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Old 05-16-2012, 12:33 AM
 
Location: Canada
5,779 posts, read 6,691,169 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackShoe View Post
Fox weights are often very overestimated. For example, if we took a 10 pound domestic tomcat and a 10 pound male red fox and stood them side by side next to each other the fox would appear to be the much larger animal. Foxes are lightly boned, are heavily furred, and have that long bushy tail that adds to the image.
Yes, I'm sure you're right. I should have worded my post differently as the foxes I had here were no more than 15 pounds, with 15 pounds being a generous estimate.
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Old 05-16-2012, 02:02 PM
 
Location: Canada
5,779 posts, read 6,691,169 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackShoe View Post
Not a coyote. Regardless of what the Wiki article said, no wild coyote ever remotely weighed 75 pounds. Pure coyotes weigh 20-35 on average, and a 40 pounder is considered very large and not common. The larger Eastern coyotes have proven to be wolf/coyote hydrids, Eastern wolf (Canis Lupus Lycaon) with coyotes. Claims to the contrary, the heaviest weighed by a reliable source was around 55 pounds, although there could be a 60 pounder somewhere. As for our unknown canine visitor, my best guess would be a large dog that was dumped and has now gone feral. As others have warned, this animal could prove to be very dangerous and unpredictable. One suggestion; would it be possible to obtain a scat sample of the animal, and if so, would the wildlife authorities be willing to go to the effort and expense of testing for dna, which would determine the species of the animal?
I was thinking about this last night. I know the Wikipedia article says that "northern" coyotes can get to 70 plus pounds, but there's no source cited. I was wondering just how far north one had to go to find these big coyotes. I came across several links claiming that a coyote (weight cited varying between 60 - 75 pounds) was shot in the mountains in Alberta but there is never any link to where that information came from.

Then there is this story about a guy in New Brunswick who thought he shot a big coyote - 82 pounds. But when the DNA was tested, it turned out that it was the first wolf shot in the province since 1876.

Then I searched for the eastern coyote, which is bigger than the western coyote, and came across a site saying that the eastern coyote average adult male weight is 33.9 pounds.

I had actually hestitated to ask my uncle much about the animal, and I certainly never suggested it might be a wolf since I didn't want to panic anyone, but I asked him yesterday just how much he estimated the 'coyote' he saw from close up weighed and he said his guess was 70 pounds. I think that guessing weights of animals can be deceiving for a variety of reasons - they can look heavier than they are, as you already pointed out about foxes, due to their pelt, but they can also appear lighter since I know that my dogs do not look like they weigh as much as they do because they have such heavy bones.

I'm assuming that a wolf at least would have heavy bones. This uncle isn't a hunter or a dog lover and therefore wouldn't be familiar with either wild animals or dogs. His words were "bigger than the average dog." And he said the animal first showed up at his place last summer.

Now assuming it isn't a dog, which is what I'm assuming because I know the dogs in the area and I took a good look through the binoculars, and it isn't uncommon for dogs to come here. When you yell at a dog it goes pell-mell straight for home. And number two, there aren't many dog breeds that are that size and shape with upright ears of that size other than German shepherds.

Okay. Just wanted to get that off my chest - it isn't easy sorting out the internet stories of the "biggest" coyote, since a lot of people claim to have shot one but they are never confirmed in any scientific way.
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Old 05-16-2012, 05:53 PM
 
434 posts, read 449,858 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by netwit View Post
Okay, here is one of the photos I have. What I have is all very similar and not good quality. The photo was taken at least 300 feet away and so the details I observed when the animal was closer and through the binoculars isn't necessarily visible.

ETA: I know I could show photos to Manitoba Conservation, but the term 'conservation' notwithstanding, I am afraid that they might just kill him, whatever he is. I would first like to know what he is, and what his general intentions are. I don't put the odds of his survival here in this rural area at very good anyway - there are a lot of people around with guns.

That's a coyote in the picture.
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Old 05-16-2012, 05:56 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AuburnAL View Post
Wolves form packs. Coyotes don't.

Recent research has shown the red wolf of the eastern US to be genetically the same as the coyote where the two hand previously been thought to be separate species. The main difference is the red wolves hunt in packs while coyotes are solitary hunters though no doubt those who are the offspring of a coyote-dog or coyote-wolf mating may have inherited pack forming behavior from their non-coyote parent.

Coyotes can actually form packs. They are more loosely formed than wolf packs. I have heard bunches of them howling before.
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Old 05-16-2012, 10:18 PM
 
Location: Orange County, CA
3,730 posts, read 5,356,703 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by netwit View Post
Then I searched for the eastern coyote, which is bigger than the western coyote, and came across a site saying that the eastern coyote average adult male weight is 33.9 pounds.

it isn't easy sorting out the internet stories of the "biggest" coyote, since a lot of people claim to have shot one but they are never confirmed in any scientific way.
That Nova Scotia site is a good one, solid information on it about Eastern coyotes. It is human nature to sometimes make wildly exaggerated claims about animals. Hundred year old trapper tales, hunter's claims, and animals observed while under stress are not reliable and should be viewed with caution until proven. Often these animals are said to be larger, running faster, leaping higher or farther, things like that. That 500 pound bear that your nerighbor saw last week running at 40 mph most likely would not top 300 and might have clocked 25. The 6 foot snake seen slithering across the road might have measured 3 1/2 feet if stretched out. Things like this happen all the time, it makes for a better story.
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Old 05-18-2012, 01:21 AM
 
Location: so cal
1,110 posts, read 2,006,770 times
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Just came across this thread. That photo is definitely a coyote. I have seen too many to count through the scope on my rifle and up close after pulling the trigger. And Dr. Drew is correct coyotes run in loose packs which will join up to bring down bigger game or when one makes a kill.
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Old 05-19-2012, 03:21 PM
 
3,764 posts, read 7,586,241 times
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I find this thread fascinating & hope to see another & better snapshot.

I asked my buddies on the Alaska forum who are knowledgeable regarding wolf/coyote distinction & the consensus is coyote:

Any coyote/wolf experts....?
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