We’ve just completed the April update and thanks to everyone who sent in their coyote submissions, it’s now posted on our tracking map. The sightings continue to be geographically diverse coming from all all parts of Chicago and its suburbs in Illinois and Indiana. Once again a special thanks to our friends at B96 in Chicago and Khits 104.3 for giving CoyoteMap.com a mention.
It may be time for us to divide up the map so we can keep it manageable for the user, especially those of you trying to access the tracking details on phones, tablets, and other mobile devices. Should we create multiple maps by geographic area or archive maps by date? Or maybe a completely different plan. Please post your thoughts in the comments below. Thanks!
We just completed a much needed update. Thanks to everyone who submitted their coyote sightings so we could add them to our map. The north and northwest areas of Chicagoland seemed to have the most new entries. Not sure if they have more coyotes or just more vigilant viewers reporting them. Either way it is fascinating to see where pockets of coyotes and even the occasional coywolf sighting occur.
Happy summer & keep sending in your coyote sightings and stories. Thanks!
Check out this great article from National Geographic that goes into detail about how coyotes have managed to adapt so well to life in the city. They managed to get some “coyote’s views” by using a Crittercam (a camera attached to a coyote) that are fascinating.
There are an estimated 2,000 coyotes living in the Chicagoland area, yet they often prove elusive to spot. In part this is no doubt due to the fact that urban coyotes have mostly adopted a nocturnal lifestyle, generally only roaming the streets at night.
Much of what we now know about the behavior of coyotes in the city can be attributed to the work of Stan Gehrt, a wildlife ecologist at Ohio State University in Columbus. He has been studying coyotes for 15 years now and just finished the first part of his research.
According to a recent article on Examiner.com, a coywolf was recently spotted in Chicago. This is one of the first ever possible sightings of the coywolf in the city. While there have been many reports of coyotes in Olive Park near Navy Pier, this is the first time we have heard of the wolf & coyote mix roaming around this area.
We haven’t had any reports yet of coywolves in the city of Chicago however these creatures are in other parts of Illinois. So what exactly is a Coywolf? Well, as the name suggests it is a hybrid of a wolf and a coyote as the result of interbreeding.
The coywolf is apparently more aggressive than a regular coyote and much like a wolf it will hunt in packs. I suppose this type of behavior could be problematic if they did start to make their way into the densely populated urban neighborhoods of Chicago. So far people and coyotes seem to be getting along alright in the city due in no small part to coyotes not having much interest in attacking humans (isolated cases aside).
If anyone has any photos or thinks they may have seen a coywolf please let us know.
UPDATE: I have not had a chance to watch this yet but PBS aired a special in January all about the History of The Coywolf. If you do watch it please be sure and post your thoughts on this special below.
The Chicago area coyote population received some national attention in the Economist via the Tribune today with their article on Coyotes as Ghosts of the City. This piece again points out that the number of coyotes living in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs is estimated at around two thousand. While most of us urban dwellers rarely see them, they are out there, primarily at night.
Interesting as well that city coyotes actually live longer than those in who live in what is often considered to be a more traditional rural habitat. As long as they don’t become to used to humans and keep eating the occasional rat, I think we should all embrace these urban ghosts.
According to ABC 7 News Chicago, a pair of coyotes were spotted and filmed on Chicago’s South side. They were first spotted near Washington Park before travelling west through Midway Plaisance to Jackson Park and eventually being the coyotes were seen by the University of Chicago campus early Wednesday. The sighting in Washington Park is apparently significant as these animals are rarely seen such a distance from Lake Michigan.
Crazy story over the weekend about coyotes chasing a dog and then clawing at and breaking windows on the door of a residence before finally giving up when the owner starting firing a bb gun at the coyotes. The report stated that there were four coyotes in total in this incident in Riverside, IL which is a west of Chicago.
A thanks to the users who have submitted their coyote sightings. Even if you only remember the month and the approximate time of day, we still want to hear from you. Just go the coyote sighting submission page and let us know. Perhaps the Chicago coyote population is far greater in the north or we need some more users from the south side and south suburbs to submit. Thanks!
Apparently the number of deer in Northern Cook County is significantly less this year as the result of a virus that killed up to 70% of the local deer population in this part of Chicago land. This will obviously force the coyotes to look for alternative, not sure if it will also make them more aggressive.