Was the single one killed in the first Delaware coyote season a sign of overestimation?
The Delaware Division of Fish and Wildlife gathered harvest numbers for their inaugural, and reported one killed coyote. The season ran from January 11 to February 28, and included trapping.
"Having only one harvested coyote reported during the new coyote hunting and trapping seasons was a bit of a surprise," said David Saveikis, director of the Division of Fish and Wildlife, in the new release. "It is unclear if the lone coyote harvested is indicative of coyote population size, the partial hunting and trapping seasons or a lack of awareness of the harvest reporting requirement. The full hunting and trapping seasons starting later this year will provide additional opportunities for coyote harvest, with the required harvest reporting an important tool in helping the division scientifically estimate and manage the coyote population."
Beginning this fall, annual coyote hunting seasons will start September 1 and run to the end of February.
Newsworks.org ran a story and published a YouTube video on the Delaware coyote situation. Watch for some more perspective:
Coyotes are not native to Delaware, and their reputation as threats to livestock, pets and humans has spread to many parts of the country previously unfamiliar with coyote interaction. In reality, coyotes can indeed have negative impacts on these and other, natural ecosystems.
At the same time, their arrival and populations, if properly managed, can lead to positive impacts, like game predator control (raccoons, foxes or other animals that may diminish game bird or other small game).
What do you think future Delaware coyote hunting seasons will look like? Leave your prediction below in the comments.