Coyotes are about 3.5 – 4 feet long including the tail. Adult males are larger than females, weighing on average about 21 and 17.5 pounds, respectively. A very large male may attain a weight of 35 pounds.

  • Common Name:


  • Scientific Name:

    Canis latrans

  • Weight:

    An average about 21-M, and 17.5-F pounds.

  • Conservation Status:

    Least Concern

  • Where to See:

    Most of North America, from the Atlantic to the Pacific seaboard and from Alaska to Panama.


Coyotes are Arizona’s most common predator and found throughout the entire state. Though not always seen, their vocalizations, consisting of howls, yelps, and barks, are regularly heard during almost any night spent in the field. The coyote is a medium-sized member of the canine family that includes wolves and foxes. The animal’s pointed ears, narrow nose, reddish brown to blond coat, and black or white tipped tail help differentiate coyotes from dogs and wolves.

Coyotes are abundant in the western U.S. and are becoming more common in the eastern U.S. Scent stations, trail cameras, vocalization responses, mark-recapture, scat counts, and track counts are techniques that have been used to assess relative or absolute abundance for small geographic areas but are difficult to implement statewide. Therefore, managers must often rely on population indices because of the difficulty in obtaining adequate data to estimate coyote population size over a large landscape such as an entire state.


Male and female coyotes pair off and form strong pair bonds, often mating together for several years, usually breeding in February. In a pack, only the alpha pair will mate and subordinates will usually help raise the young. After a 2-month gestation period, from 1 to several young are born in a den or burrow; the average litter size being about 5 pups.

The coyote makes its den in a rocky crevice, log, cave, or the den of another animal. It usually doesn’t dig its own den; it finds an abandoned den of a badger or a fox and enlarges it. The pups are born blind and with floppy ears. They open their eyes in about 10 days. The pups begin to come out of their den when they are about 3 to 4 weeks old and begin leaving the vicinity of the den area when they are about 8 to 10 weeks old. They are weaned when they are about a month old. Read more >>

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