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Meet the Animal Park's Coyote

Canis latrans


About Coyotes


Coyotes live throughout Canada, the U.S., Mexico, and Central America.


Coyotes are opportunistic, generalist predators that eat everything from fruit to insects to large-hooved animals. Coyotes in suburban areas are adept at exploiting human-made food resources such as garbage and dog food left outdoors.


Coyotes that live in proximity to people are often nocturnal (active at night), but they are behaviorally flexible to their environment, so depending on their territory and resource availability, they may be diurnal (active during the day) and/or crepuscular. They tend to live in a pack, usually a small family group.

  • Coyotes began to arrive in N.C. (through natural range expansion—a few had previously been released illegally by hunters) in the late 1980s, and by 2005 they had expanded into all 100 counties.
  • They are the most vocal of all North American wild mammals, using several distinct vocalizations, including the group yip howl. Howling may announce where territories are to other packs.
  • Coyotes help control agricultural pests like rodents as well as keep many small mammal populations in check. If those populations were allowed to become too large, habitat degradation would result.

Family Adventures

Have you ever looked a lion, tiger, leopard, or wolf in the eye? Had a “conversation” with a jungle cat? Witnessed the flickering tufts of a caracal’s ear? What on earth is a binturong—and why is it so important to its natural ecosystem?

Discover all this and much more when you join us for an Adventure tour at the Animal Park!