He caught up to and shot the coyote today. A true story of the hunter and the hunted.
That is him cruising down the road. Picture does not work cuz you can only see motion.
It began about 4 weeks ago and ended recently.
Hunting the elusive coyote is tough. They have personality habits. Shooting a coyote is not easy at all. Tracking a coyote is hard.
So we start out with about 6 nearby pets being just plain gone. Then we have a cold (for here) winter and early spring. So little critters do not have litters -- bunnies and mice. The shrubbery does not sprout like usual. In short order we have coyotes coming in from the wilderness we encroached on and feeding on domestic animals that are often trapped by man in a yard. Oh yes a big coyote can get over a 6 foot fence. They can also dig under them.
About the personality habits: many smarter animals vary routines like we do. In tracking an animal routines do the job for us. So an animal that varies is tougher. Most people do not understand that most hunting is not done by walking around, it is accomplished by knowing the profile, habits and areas of the prey. Then you get there ahead of them, lie in ambush and shoot them.
Coyotes are fun because they run in crazy patterns. A deer or a turkey - they just run away. So you lead them and shoot, easy.
The other thing for both tracking and shooting is the "underbrush", they go low and under when we cannot.
Then I saw a ground disturbance twice in the same spot.
Certain things, certain movements, certain animals and certain plants cause and certain weather leaves an imprint. If you study it for forty years you begin to see patterns and recurrences.
This "track is a coyote, pivoting to look around and only two days old.
The sticks were fresh from a very windy day about 3 days ago. I suspect a baby whirlwind right here.
Next day I came back and sat still for 2 hours.
He did not come. Perfect now I knew when to catch him because it was not now. Our absence tells us much about our presence.
So I returned the next day. I walked softly and silently and blended with my surroundings. Wind was coming at me, no scent. So I crouched and loaded. And burned my eyes looking for movement. A Redtail Hawk screeched high above and I know I had the mangy bastard.
So I ran as fast as I could to where he would be. Boring a hole in the side of the canyon with my eyes, and there I saw it, no movement on a branch. A hah! He held it still with his still body, no swaying. My target was dead ahead 35 yards.
I shot the poor bastard dead right there and then. Look at the photo.
Right there, can you see him. And I had time to take and shoot right here. I wonder why folks need guns when they got cellphone cameras.
Too often I do not care much for people.
I was born a country boy.
I can run a trout line, I can make smoke and whiskey and grow a crop. We say Grace and we say mam.
But mostly what we do is not survive but love. We love our nature. We love critters. We can smell rain and the lack thereof. We know that that is where we belong and it belongs to us.
Walk with me down this road
Listen to the evening toad
Here the willows make a whisper like a dove
Feel the stars, not see them up above.
Walk with me barefoot and feel the red dirt
Walk with me in your evening skirt and flirt
Nature is wonderful and bountiful
You fit right being beautiful
So walk with me my young daughter child
And appreciate that which is wild
And please try to understand
I am a man born of the land
I should provide more in this world
But that would make me a flag unfurled.