Coyote

Coyote

Canis latrans

Coyotes exhibit phenotypic, behavioral and dietary plasticity, meaning they are highly adaptive to changing landscapes. Over the past century, human-caused habitat alteration and removal of competing predators have enabled coyotes to rapidly expand their range from the Great Plains of North America to most of Canada and Central America.

Facts

Length: 0.7-0.9 m (2.5 to 2.8 ft)

Weight: 7-23 kg (15 to 50 lbs)

Conservation Status: Least concern

Tracking

The Northern Blue Ridge and Piedmont Regions of Virginia are predominantly comprised of private agricultural lands dedicated to crop and livestock production (e.g., cattle, horses, sheep and goats). The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI) is located on the border of these regions and, when combined with the adjacent Shenandoah National Park, serves as an ideal corridor for coyotes to move across a wide range of habitats.

Smithsonian scientists are studying the movement ecology of coyotes utilizing SCBI and adjacent properties. The findings from this research will provide valuable insights into the relationship between coyote movements and multiple land uses. By understanding how coyotes move across a gradient of hunting, recreation, and development pressures, we aim to help rural landowners make informed decisions about predator management in a changing environment.

Meet the Team

Joe Guthrie

Ecologist, MoL Program Manager
Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute
Conservation Ecology Center
National Zoological Park

Nucharin Songsasen, Ph.D., D.V.M.

Head, Center for Species Survival
Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute
National Zoological Park

John McEvoy, Ph.D.

Conservation Biologist
Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI)
Conservation Ecology Center

Amy Johnson, Ph.D.

Ecologist, MoL Program Manager
Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute
Conservation Ecology Center
National Zoological Park

Bill McShea, Ph.D.

Wildlife Ecologist
Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI)
Conservation Ecology Center

Melissa Songer, Ph.D.

Conservation Biologist
Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI)
Conservation Ecology Center

Jared Stabach, Ph.D.

Ecologist, MoL Program Coordinator
Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute (SCBI)
Conservation Ecology Center
National Zoological Park