View Full Version : Coyotes?

03-07-2007, 08:22 PM
This has nothing to do with fishing. I drove through Cades Cove last evening and saw something that looked like a coyote. There were 3 deer watching it and when it got too close they took off. Does Cades Cove have coyotes? It was too big to be a fox.

David Knapp
03-07-2007, 08:30 PM
Yes!! There are plenty of coyotes around. It seems like I've been seeing them a lot more the last few years but that could just be because I'm spending more time in the mountains...

03-07-2007, 09:42 PM
I've seen a few over the years. For a while, I'd see the same one at the parking lot of the "Y" most nights while heading home when it was too dark to see a fly but light enough to be legal. Check out an old thread many pages back called "wildlife encounters while fishing". You'll be suprised at what all you could run across in the park.

03-07-2007, 10:27 PM
Have spotted many coyotes in Cades Cove area, along with several fox, a beezillion deer, a score of bears, and 1 bobcat

03-07-2007, 10:50 PM
We sure have 'em here in Middle Tennessee. I hear 'em late sometimes when I go outside with my dog. There've been reports of pets being killed by coyotes in the area, and I have even seen one in broad daylight crossing a busy street near my office near the Nashville airport. :mad:


03-07-2007, 10:57 PM
I deer hunt with a bow alot. A couple of years ago I shot a fat doe in Williamson county. The deer ran a long ways and beforeI could get to her I heard coyotes goiing nuts one hill side over. by time I got there they had ate the hind quarters off the deer. I now have them on my Farm in WVA. I hate it because I feel they kill alot of Game animals.

03-07-2007, 11:07 PM
We sure have 'em here in Middle Tennessee. I hear 'em late sometimes when I go outside with my dog. There've been reports of pets being killed by coyotes in the area, and I have even seen one in broad daylight crossing a busy street near my office near the Nashville airport. :mad:


Funny you mentioned the airport...I've actually seen 'em on the tarmac at BNA from the window of a Boeing...also in broad daylight. Saw one at about 4:30am in the heart of Green Hills in front of the boy scout headquarters too.

03-08-2007, 01:22 PM
I saw a coyote for several minutes along Rich Mtn Road coming out of Cades Cove last year. I had thought it might be a red wolf but I think those are all gone now. It was abnormally reddish in tone but otherwise looked like the coyotes I've seen back home in west Arkansas (where we are overrun with them).


Byron Begley
03-08-2007, 01:47 PM
I talked to a very reliable customer two days ago who said he saw a mountain lion on Thunderhead Prong. We had one near the woodpile at our house during the night a few years ago. The tracks were perfect and it's tail left a trail in the snow between the paw prints. I talked to someone at Hazel Creek a few years ago who watched a cougar for 15 minutes. The Park Service says they've never seen one. The locals here in the mountains say they are here. I talked to a neighbor the other day that saw a bobcat on his porch and saw him again in his yard later. He also saw a fox run through his yard with a turkey in his mouth. He feeds the turkeys and that in turn brings in the predators.


03-08-2007, 05:43 PM
byron, i saw a panther in the area of anthony creek in cades cove less than 2 weeks ago. i saw it in my rear view mirrors as it passed behind me.

Byron Begley
03-08-2007, 06:51 PM

As much as you are in the Park taking pictures, maybe you will be the guy who will prove once and for all that these animals exist. Most people around here believe that cougars and panthers ended up in the park but started out as caged pets. I know one guy in Nashville who had two cougars. One of them killed his daughter. He was a musician with plenty of money. I think people get tired of them and turn them loose here. They have a huge territory and eventually they meet up and have offspring. This is all speculation but I believe mountain lions and panthers are here in the Southern Appalachians. Think about it, there are at least a million acres of adjoining wilderness in North Carolina and Tennessee.

About coyotes. We have a bunch of them around here. I saw one digging in a trash barrel on the Little River right in Townsend. Paula and I have had them howling right in front of our house at night. Now that our dogs are old and deaf, we sleep a lot better and so do they.


03-08-2007, 07:07 PM
My farm in Wva is in Wirt county. The western middle part of the state about 30 miles est of I-77. There have been confirmed sitings of bears for many years. I have even seen on on my farm. My cousin still lives there, and last year there was 2 sitings of a panther and some tracks. WVa DNR sayes that there is no panther and if there is, it is one someone released. This deer season I was coming out of the woods and something growled at me. it was a very deep growl definaly not a dog. the next day I spoted what looked like very long cat black in color with a busy tail. it looke to be about 3'-4' long and short. I still don't know what it was. not a bobcat because it had a tail and i have seen a few bobcats up there before. Any suggestions of what it could be?

03-08-2007, 07:35 PM
The coyote in Cades Cove was more reddish than ones in Kentucky. The Central Kentucky area had no coyotes when I was a kid. Now they are thick and a real nuisance. Four years ago, a professional trapper was hired to trap a coyote family in Lexington, a subdivision area. They were eating dog and cat food left outside people's homes and also eating the cats and small dogs. The trapper showed people some collars he found around their den. It made a great newspaper story with a picture of a couple of live coyotes he trapped alive.

Paula Begley
03-08-2007, 10:37 PM
Dubbing, the shop cat, has like 5 cat cabanas in the storeroom where he normally sleeps at night. There are times, when we don't corral him early enough or when it stays light later in the evening, that Dubbing does not get into his safe haven of the shop at night.

Without fail, the next day, Dubbing will be waiting for us to let him into the shop...where he will retire to one of this many cabanas to sleep the day away. I feel certain that he has stayed up the entire night, watching for what might be out there to eat him! Let me say too, that I am just as tired as he is...because when he does not come back at night, I am sleepless with worry.


03-09-2007, 01:06 AM
My wife and I saw some Coyotes on a visit to the Cove several months ago and they appeared to be larger than some I've seen out west. In fact we had a hard time convincing ourselve it was coyotes and not wolves.

A side note about our experience with Coyotes concerns an incident I experienced while attending school in Broken Arrow, OK. Our apartment building was within a 1/4 mile of the Arkansas river and I used to jog down that way for exercise. One evening as I and my roommate were running we heard something rustling in the brush near the road we were jogging on. The next thing we knew, we saw a huge set of ears pop up over the brush and soon as it continued toward us it turned out to be a pup, or what we Florida boys believed to be a stray dog with big ears. It was so sweet, had a beautiful coat, and looked kind of helpless, so we took it back to our apartment and fed it. This was the smartest dog we'd either one ever seen. It was house broke and so affectionette. Any time she needed to use the restroom she would go to the door and stand quitely. We eventually were told that she wasn't a dog at all, she was in fact a coyote pup :).

One other comment about big cats in the Smokies involved our drive in from Florida late one evening. We were just inside the park on the NC side and it was rather dark already. As we drove along inside the park a big cat suddenly appeared from uphill and ran down directly infront of our car. As the cat got on the road it turned toward ur car but kept moving on downhill. I had one other encounter with a panther and that was in the wilds of central Florida, it also ran out in front of the truck I was in and paused long enough to snarl at me, then ran off. Having seen a few Bobcats, I can tell you that neither of these animals were Bobcats, their size and color matched that of cougars or panthers I've seen in captivity. The one in NC was seen by both my wife and I.


03-09-2007, 01:10 AM
what's up with the wolves? I read in a book recently that there were red wolved in the park. I never thought about this, but it got me thinking, about 5 years ago me and two friends were driving through the park, on the townsend side, it was night, and we passed on the road some type of canine animal. all three of us said, "was that a wolf?!!" we only had about a 3 second glance at it, but it was close up right in the middle of the road. then we all figured there weren't wolves in the park and it must have been a coyote. but we all agreed it looked like a wolf. maybe it was.

03-09-2007, 01:17 AM
From what I've been told, the Red Woves were re-intorduced into the Park, Cades Cove I believe, but later removed. The coyotes and their size as well as their color have got me wondering if perhaps their was some inter-species breeding? I am not sure if that would have been possible, but if so that might explain their size and appearance.

By the way, I also had seen a coyote over in Cosby and it was smaller as well as gray(er) than the ones I have seen in the cove.


03-09-2007, 01:18 AM
the next day I spoted what looked like very long cat black in color with a busy tail. it looke to be about 3'-4' long and short. I still don't know what it was. not a bobcat because it had a tail and i have seen a few bobcats up there before. Any suggestions of what it could be?Hey Vern,

You may have spotted a Mink....do either of these images show a resemblance?



If not, it could have been the elusive Chupacabra;)

03-09-2007, 01:27 AM
I also wonder if some sightings may involve exotic pets that have been released or perhaps escaped their captors.

On a funny note in another story from my own past, I recall driving down a road in Bradenton, FL, when I was working as an electrician almost 30 years ago. As I was driving along I noticed some kind of animal along side the road ahead and as I came closer it jumped off into some bushes. As it jumped I noticed it had an incredibly long tail for what I first believed to have been a cat. As I got almost parallel to where it was, I looked and saw a small mokey sitting there with a beer can turned up as if it was drinking from the can. It turned out that the local humane society had a cage full of them that broke out and they were wreaking havoc on one of the wealthier areas of town.


03-09-2007, 09:19 AM
My home is on Cove Mountain in Wear's Valley. There is a pack of coyotes that come from the direction of the park down the mountain about once a week at night crossing the road near where Robeson Road meets and becomes Katy Hollar Rd. They descend through a 'finger' of wooded area into the valley. They bark and howl most of the time and it sounds like there are more than a dozen in the pack. Last spring and summer young ones could be heard among the yells. About that time again, I guess.


03-09-2007, 09:57 AM
Have you seen any of those coyotes? What color are they and about what size compared to a dog like a collie?

I do not think a large population of coyotes will be a good thing. In Central Ky, they are wiping out the rabbit population. (I hear they also eat a lot of mice which would be a good thing) My Dad let a hunter come on his farm and trap them because they got so thick so fast. Dad was a rabbit hunter and he noticed the rabbit population went down fast after the coyotes appeared. He decided the coyotes were responsible and they were on his "list" after that.

03-09-2007, 10:49 AM
Being as we're part of the Great Internet Fly Fishermen/Cougar Watchmen Association ;), I thought I'd knock together a few links here for people interested in this topic to peruse:

First, this thread on my site:


Second, the original thread on my site:


Third, this thread ehre,

Finally, Fly Fishing Arkansas' thread, including a sighting by Davy Wotton at Bull Shoals Tailwater:

http://p222.ezboard.com/Mountain-Lion/fflyfishingarkansasandmissourifrm14.showMe ssage?topicID=2978.topic

(Thanks to Rusty Garoutte for that link.)


03-09-2007, 11:00 AM
Careful about those Coyotes...I hear they are sneaking illegal Georgian's across the border (hee, hee)

03-09-2007, 11:19 AM
Barbara, yes, I've seen some 'singles' several times. These coyotes are definitely much larger than the ones that I have had experience with in the Mobile, Alabama river delta. However, they seem to be about the same color...a light tan. They began migrating into the coastal gulf area about 25 years ago from the west. Within just a few years the wild and domestic animal/bird population, e.g. rabbits, birds, young deer, feral piglets, turkey/turkey eggs, quail/quail eggs, bobcats, feral cats, feral dogs, skunks, squirrels, snakes, sheep, goats, ground turtles, even newborn calves, became affected according to the wildlife officers. Then the coyotes became braver, for they have no known predator..other than man and started to coming closer to homes...taking cats, small dogs, garbage and selective vegetables..e.g. my field of ripe watermelons and cantalopes. They will eat most anything...

A GSMNP ranger told me that they would love to see some local hunters come into the park, during daylight only, and thin out the coyotes. But most hunters won't because the coyotes are very hard to even get near to and the normal type of hunting dog has a difficult time catching up to and baying one. Plus most coyotes are too smart to be trapped legally in a cage-type trap. However, using an audio sound device recording of a wounded rabbit while sitting in a 'stand' will attract one once in a while during the day.

Poisoning, using anti-freeze, has been successful but illegally done. But that presents too widespread a danger to other animals. Another illegal method found in the delta swamp was to hang a cord from a tree limb tying on a large double treble-hook artificial fish lure with a piece of meat attached hanging about five feet off the ground. The coyote will jump up to get the meat, get caught and cannot turn loose because of his mouth being hooked. He eventually will die or later be shot. But this is a very cruel thing to do..but like poisoning it works.

My thought is to have a bunch of us guys get together along with the game wardens and form communications whereby I could alert the group one night once the pack of coyotes has crossed Katy Hollar Road and entered the valley. We could line the road with shotguns scattered down the paved road there and using lights, once they return upward, eliminate some of the animals. I haven't talked to the TWRA or GSMNP about this, yet.

Stalking while 'headlighting' as a night hunting method did not work for us along the coast, either. One could never get close enough. They are just too smart. These animals have evolved into a super individual and pack predator with extremely high intelligence, advanced sight, excellent smell and an acute hearing far above the normal. They will, eventually, have to be controlled or eliminated!


03-09-2007, 11:54 AM
Barbara, after re-reading your earlier question to me: The largest coyote that I have seen here was last fall on Little River Road between Elkmont and Sugarland. It was feeding on road-kill. That one was very healthy looking and a bit smaller than a normal sized labrador dog...rather big for coyotes that I am familiar with!


03-09-2007, 07:06 PM
I am also in Central Kentucky, and Barbara is right, coyotes are everywhere and getting to be more of a nuisance. When I was a kid in New Mexico, the coyotes we saw were all smaller, and skittish to the point of paranoia. It was rare to see one, and it never stuck around. I have seen them here boldly walk around in plain sight, and they seem bigger here also. Perhaps that is a function of more food here, including garbage, pet food, and pets, and may have something to do with interbreeding with feral dogs or house pets that run with the coyotes from time to time. Color may also be an adaptive thing, or due to interbreeding, but the ones I have seen here are not the muted color I remember. I know they are not good for the quail and rabbit population, but there seem to be many more turkeys and deer than before. I remember hunting them in NM with recordings of rabbit calls and very long barrelled and heavy varmint rifles, and it was not easy to kill a coyote. At least then they were varmints, with no season or limits or even a license required. I am talking the early 60's here, so I do not know what the requirements are now. Watson

03-09-2007, 07:38 PM
I wish I had kept the article on the guy who trapped the coyote family living in a subdivision on the edge of Lexington. I wonder how he got 2 of them alive. The hunter on my Dad's farm, this was some years ago, used live traps and snares. I don't know what he did with the ones he trapped alive, he shot the ones in the snares. The farm was just overrun with them in a short time. Never saw one in the daylight, they were only seen at night. A real nuisance for rabbit hunters and folks who raised chickens. The belief was that the coyotes killed the foxes because the foxes, which had been on the farmland in small numbers for years, are now all gone.
Personally, I liked the foxes, even though they occasionally took one of my grandmother's chickens.

Paula, I think Dubbing should stay inside EVERY night. Coyotes would even attack a town landmark if they got the chance!

03-09-2007, 08:00 PM
anyone wanting a great coyote picture can, if paula posts it, go to the gallery. if not, email and i'll send you one of the better specimens in the park.