Principles for Baiting Coyotes
Coyote (Canis latrans), for most trappers, are the most difficult furbearer to trap. Trappers that have success in catching them are held in high esteem in the trapping community. Major L. Boddicker has a Ph.D. in wildlife management and has been involved in baiting for coyotes. Coyote baiting has undergone significant research because of the coyotes’ tendency to predate on livestock. The government, seeking to help manage coyote predation, has invested a lot of money and time into learning what works and what doesn’t to improve coyote control activities. Baiting coyotes is essential as baits are used to lure coyotes to traps and to M-44s.
In an article entitled, “Spring and Summer Testing: Results of Spring and Summer Testing of Baits and Lures with Non-lethal Devices. How Does Temperature Affect Catch Rates? How Often Should a Trapper Re-bait Sets” published in the American Trapper 55:5(Sept-Oct):18-22, Dr. Boddicker revealed some of the findings from his research.
- Temperature affects how well baits/lures work. As a rule, when temperatures dip below freezing, you will need to apply 1-4 times more bait/lure to achieve the same attractiveness level.
- Coyotes progressively loose interest in baits/lures as temperature rises above 79° F.
- Sets should be refreshed with bait/lure every 7 days or so depending on relative humidity and temperature.
- Coyotes showed the greatest interest in baited/lured sets between 3-6 days. So be patient.
- Urine and liquid lures have the shortest attraction times as they dry out quickly.
- Coyotes have incredible smelling ability. When using quality baits/lures, only a Q-tip or pea-sized glob is needed.
These are just a few of the principles that Boddicker suggests. But he does have one more. He always recommends that trappers and by extension, wildlife control operators, keep records of the types of baits/lures they use. Learn what works by season, temperature in your neck of the woods. When you have some good data, then determine how well the baits/lures work by creating a success index for each bait/lure. Calculate the index by furbearer visits to your set and divide by the number of lure/bait presentations (each night). A simple Excel spreadsheet will make this easy.Stephen M. Vantassel, CWCP, ACE, is the owner of Wildlife Control Consultant, LLC. He helps people restore their balance with nature through publishing, training, consulting, and the internet. He has published numerous articles in trade and academic publications along with several books (http://kingsdivinity.academia.edu/StephenMVantassel). He is a sought after speaker and trainer. Copyright All postings are the property of Stephen M. Vantassel and Wildlife Control Consultant, LLC. Text (not images) may be reprinted in non-profit publications provided that the author and website URL is included. If images wish to be used, explicit and written permission must be obtained from Wildlife Control Consultant, LLC.