Coyote sounds at night

Asked August 3, 2016, 12:03 PM EDT

The last several nights on our property in rural north Idaho, coyotes have been going crazy, yipping and barking with each other. Last night, one was right near our house while another(s) was further away and they were calling back and forth with very characteristic sounds. What are they doing?

Also, what is their day/night behavior? Do we need to worry about encountering them during the day, specifically, should we be concerned about our kids playing outside without an adult nearby?

Bonner County Idaho

1 Response

I would not be worried about a coyote attack on humans. They are almost unheard of, and probably occur in places where they are unusually habituated to people. Places where they aren't hunted and view humans and homes as a food source. Coyotes do prey on small animals including dogs, cats, poultry, sheep, calves, etc. They are usually more active at night, but daytime activity is common too. I don't know exactly what they are using their calls for other than communicating with each other. They'll also use calls too warn off other animals. They may view dogs as competitors and/or prey. They have an interesting way of sounding like there are many coyotes when there may only be two.