Living with Coyotes in Arizona

Coyotes are common in rural urban areas throughout the state of Arizona.  They tend to travel and hunt alone or in pairs.

Description and Habitat

They are usually gray with a rusty color on neck and flanks.  Black patches on the base and tip of the tail help distinguish them from dogs.  They weigh 20 – 30 pounds and stand 18 – 21 inches tall.  They have and average litter of 4 – 5 pups.  They can run as fast as 40 miles per hour.  Their diet includes fruit and vegetables, pet food, small, wild and domestic animals, snakes and lizards, and garbage.

Possible Conflicts with Humans

Coyotes are curious, clever and adaptable.  They quickly learn to take advantage of any newly discovered food source (Coyotes are known to eat pet food and knock over unsecured garbage cans.).  They may walk along the tops of walls in search of unattended dogs or cats to eat.  They may become aggressive towards large dogs.

What attracts them?

Coyotes may visit a home if they find water, food, or shelter there.  Food can include unattended pets, birds or rodents attracted to bird feeders, pet food, garbage, or fallen fruit.  Their water sources can be a pet’s water bowl or even a swimming pool.  Their shelter can be a storm drain or any cave-like area beneath a shed or unused building.

Want to learn more about Arizona Wildlife? Be sure to check out our photo booklet Living with Arizona Wildlife.

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