Cape May's Coyotes

Posted 02/14/05
CAPE MAY, N.J. – It's the middle of the night, you can't sleep and suddenly, in the far distance, you hear a sound..

Coyote in Yellowstone

It's a mournful yelping that echoes across the old farm fields...

...a soothing sound you associate with the wild West and vintage cowboy movies and simpler times.

Coyotes - in Cape May?? Yes indeed.

Very few people south of the Cape May Canal actually have seen these mysterious creatures of the night.

We're lucky - we've gotten glimpses twice of a very quick moving coyote slinking through our rural backyard near Higbee Beach.

How do we know they're around?

We hunt for coyotes' tell tale signs.

They've been leaving footsteps recently in our newest, as yet unplanted, Cape May flower and vegetable garden.

Better watch it boys - there'll be no prancing through that garden come spring. (We hear they're particulary fond of melons. So are we.)

We see droppings out back, along a trail behind the house.

If you know "scat" you can tell when the critters were there.

Get there soon enough and you might even be able to tell what the coyotes have been eating - a little mouse, an unfortunate guinea hen, maybe a rabbit moving just a little too slowly.

We found some old possum bones - the remants of a particulary good coyote meal.

We've even seen traces of coyote in our driveway, along the edge of a brushy area.

Why walk through thick brush when you can walk on crushed concrete? Those critters are smart.

They're also a hot topic these days.

A columnist friend of ours in North Jersey is writing about them.

Some local West Cape May residents are talking about shooting them.

And local Cape May and Atlantic City news editors are putting them front and center in their newspapers.

Good luck to anyone who wants to go on a coyote hunt.

This is about as much as you'll get.

 

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Cape May coyote tracks

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