An online resource based on the award-winning nature guide

Coyotes Scent-marking & Mating

You may have been hearing Coyotes howling more than usual lately.  This is because their mating season has begun, and they are much more vocal prior to and during it.  Another Coyote sign to be aware of this time of year is the abundance of Coyote scent-marking, with both urine and feces.

Female Coyotes come into heat, or estrus, only once a year for two to five days, in late January or February in the Northeast.  It is not unusual to come across spots where both male and female Coyotes have scent-marked during this time.  Often one will mark on top of or next to its mate’s marking.  Sometimes the female’s blood can be seen in her urine, or, in the case of the pictured marking, her blood dripped onto the snow as she investigated her mate’s urine.

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8 responses

  1. Alice

    Mary, the detective ! 🔎 That’s a long urine trail.

    February 3, 2020 at 7:39 am

  2. kathiefive

    Last night I heard the coyotes very nearby, and it sounds like there are many – way more than 2, singing together. Is that an illusion, or are they singing in large groups during mating season?

    February 3, 2020 at 9:34 am

    • Hi Kathie! It’s my understanding that pairs howl together when courting, but families have “group howls” throughout the year, which is probably what you heard. My very best to you!

      February 3, 2020 at 11:56 am

  3. Gretchen Hannon

    Unsubscribe Please unsubscribe me from this account. Thank you, Gretchen Hannon

    February 3, 2020 at 10:17 am

    • Hi Gretchen,
      I’m afraid you have to unsubscribe yourself on my website. WordPress doesn’t allow me access to accounts. Thanks very much for following my blog in the past! Mary

      February 3, 2020 at 11:53 am

  4. Jo

    Why is there blood? For a human, menstruation occurs if the egg is not fertilized & therefore the lining is not needed & is shed. This would not seem consistent with the current mating activity , would it? Is this something different?

    February 3, 2020 at 12:20 pm

  5. Barbara

    I walk two dogs in the woods several times every day. I came across a bloody urine patch, and feared one of the pups was having a urinary track issue. This was followed by an abundance of inspecting many doggie pees, Not my favorite way to trek thru the woods. No blood ever seen. Phew. And figured that what I saw was urine from a female fox or coyote in estrus. You confirmed it for me. There are numerous coyote runs where we trek about.

    February 3, 2020 at 1:03 pm

  6. Abigail Parker

    Enjoying your new book IMMENSELY. Here at Bradbury Mountain we watch kettles of hawks in the Spring too. Love Abi Parker

    February 3, 2020 at 6:25 pm

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