Now that all major hunting seasons are over, there’s still coyotes to pursue and they can be a challenge for even experienced hunters.
Coyotes are notoriously wary and difficult to call in as that’s the popular way to hunt them. The folks at Convergent Hunting, a Texas-based game call manufacturer that makes everything from mouth and hand calls to smartphone-controlled calls and decoys, say that successfully calling-in one of these critters provides an adrenaline rush that can fetch a few dollars for their pelts.
Convergent says that calling in a coyote presents a real challenge to a hunter of any skill level, especially those new to the sport. Convergent offers some tips to help get the most out of your next hunt for these “yotes” as they’re called, and who kill fawns, birds, rabbits and pets among other prey.
My son once related a story to me where his buddy shot a spring gobbler in Berks County and before he could retrieve it, a coyote ran up, grabbed it and ran off with his bird. Seems they’re also opportunists.
Convergent Hunting offers these tips that could help coyote hunters be successful.
First tip, don’t give away a free education. They claim that with many new and inexperienced hunters heading afield, it’s common to see older, cheaper calls getting airtime in the coyote fields. The result is a highly call-literate population making these wary critters even more challenging to call into shooting range. A call with poor sound quality, is a way to give coyotes a free education.
Second tip, stick to the basics. Instead of getting fancy with exotic call patterns and advanced hunting strategies, the best way to improve your coyote hunting game is to drill on the fundamentals. This includes setting up appropriately for wind direction, maintaining concealment and mastering the use of a good electronic call with a few high-quality sounds, A premium electronic call helps newbies, in particular, and hunters of all experience levels to produce the most consistent calls.
Third tip, use better calls to produce better, more realistic sounds. Many older electronic calls typically feature a horn-style speaker sound and run off AA batteries, neither of which is ideal for creating quality sound claim Convergent.
Now may be a good time to try this sport if you haven’t already as litters of from 5-7 coyote pups are born from mid-April to early May and they need to be fed. As such, their parents are out looking for food in daytime hours even though coyotes are mainly nocturnal feeders.
While coyotes have adapted to a wide variety of habitats, including in the city of Allentown where one resident posted a photo of one on a community website walking down the street in the West End. They’ve also been seen in the Stiles, Egypt, Ruchsville, Orefield and Salisbury Township areas. And a buddy used to trap them at the rear of Cedarbrook Nursing Home. But they’re typically found in heavily forested, dairy and cropland areas. Coyotes prefer heavy brushy cover such as clear-cuts (a good place to hunt) and along edges between forest and agricultural areas where prey is abundant.
Most importantly, pay attention to wind direction as yotes have a ultra-keen sense of smell.
Since the inseason trout stockings are over until fall, now may be a good time to head to the Jersey shore for some big fish like stripers and good eating fluke.
According to our fishing reporters from On the Water Magazine, the striper bite in Jersey rivers, bays and surf is good. They report some very big fish are falling for clams on the beaches, especially to the south.
Rick Hebert, at Tackle World in Rochelle Park, said stripers are hitting with regularity in Raritan Bay and anglers are throwing 2 and 3-ounce Mojos, plugs and shads and flutter spoons.
Mike Pinto, at Giglio’s Bait & Tackle in Sea Bright, reports striper fishing remains good in both the Shrewsbury and Naversink Rivers with anglers luring them with bucktails, shads and especially Savage Shads. More bass are showing up on the beaches and hitting clams, worms and paddle tails. He added that fluke are also biting in the rivers but could be a little spotty.
Mike Gleason at Tak Waterman in Long Branch, said there are lots of bass in Raritan Bay and the rivers, however they are a little more scattered.
Bob Matthews, at Fisherman’s Den in Belmar, reports the opening sea bass season saw some nice fish being caught and there’s good fluking as well in Shark River. The striper bite in local waters has the Belmar Marina bustling with action. He said more stripers are showing up in the local surf with clams, worms and bunker chunks all catching fish.
Pete Kupper, at Charlie’s Bait & Tackle in Normandy Beach, is receiving good striper reports from the surf with bass eating fresh clams, SP Minnows and metal-lipped swimmers. He goes on to say the back bay is holding plenty of bass with the evening into the night offering the best time to fish. Plus, an occasional weakfish is turning up with shads and small plugs luring them to hook.
Ray Kerico, at Grump’s Bait & Tackle in Seaside Park, said the beach fishing for stripers is outstanding with big fish being caught almost entirely on clams. He happily adds that anglers are having difficulty finding slot fish as many of the bass are now over 40 inches. Fluking too has been good in Barnegat Bay as is blue fishing that are in the 10-pound range.
Jason Szabo at Fishermen’s Supply in Point Pleasant Beach, reports stripers are in the Manasquan River at the Route 35 and 70 bridges and in Point Pleasant Canal. Fluking there is also on the uptick for anglers using light jig heads tipped with Gulp bait and squid strips. A few weakfish and blues have also arrived.
WHITEHALL FREE KIDS FISHING DERBY SET
As a reminder, the annual Whitehall Township Fishing Derby for youngsters is scheduled for Saturday, May 28, at Hokey Park on Lehigh Street in Hokendauqua. Registration is from 8 a.m. to 8:45 a.m. prior to the contest casting off at 9 a.m. The contest runs until 12 noon.
According to Michele Dragovits, Whitehall Township Secretary, over 100 trout will be stocked in the Hokey Creek the morning of the contest. First, second and third place prizes will be awarded in four age groups of 6 and under, 7-8, 10-12 and 13-15. Plus, there will be a special prize for the overall largest fish.
Nick Hromiak has been an outdoors and automotive writer for over 30 years. He's been published in numerous national and state-wide outdoor magazines and newspapers.