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South Dakota State Animal:

Coyote howling - click to see all state mammals
Coyote howling - photo © Robert Volpe / CritterZone: Animal - Wildlife -
Nature Stock Photography
- copyrighted image - no use allowed without a
license (contact CritterZone for commercial application license).
See All State Animals - Mammals.

Coyote

See coyote video below

The coyote (Canis latrans) was adopted as South Dakota's state animal in 1949. Native to the desert southwest, the coyote now ranges from Alaska, throughout most of Canada and the USA, and south to central America. In South Dakota, the coyote (also called prairie wolf) is found in the greatest numbers in the Black Hills and along the Missouri River and its tributaries.

Coyote - click to see all animal symbols
Coyote standing along roadside - photo by Marya on Wikipedia -
published under terms of Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 License.
See All State Animals - Mammals.

The howl of the coyote is known as the song of the west (one of the few wild animals whose vocalizations are commonly heard). The coyote has a range of distinctive sounds it uses to communicate with pups and other adults including barks, yips, howls, yelps and huffs. As with all canines, they also use body language (ears, tail, facial expressions) to get their point across.

The coyote mates for life. Breeding occurs in early spring. A litter of 5-10 pups are born after a 60-65 day gestation period. The male tends to the female during her late pregnancy and while she stays with the pups in the den until their eyes open (about 10-12 days after birth). Both parents spend the first summer teaching the pups basic hunting and survival skills and by late summer or early fall the litter begins to disperse and go their own way.

Coyotes are very intelligent, have excellent vision and sense of smell, and can attain a speed of 64 mph. They are skilled hunters - in summer feeding on small game and rodents, in winter banding in packs to hunt larger game such as deer and elk.

One of the most adaptable animals in the world, the coyote will change its diet and breeding habits to accommodate the changing environment. The coyote's ability to live in close proximity to humans insures their survival in the America's.

Adult coyote - click to see all state mammals
Coyote photo by Billie Cromwell / retired Pennsylvania Game Commission: PGC Public Photo Gallery. See All State Mammals.
Source:
Urban and Suburban Coyotes: USDA Wildlife Services
Signs and Symbols of South Dakota: SD official website
Canis latrans - Coyote; Prairie Wolf; Brush Wolf: SDNHM
State Animal: Coyote: SD DOT Kid's Corner
The Coyote - canis latrans: Desert USA
Links:
All State Animals - Mammals


    

 

South Dakota Symbols & Icons:

bird - animal
fish - insect
flower - grass
tree - soil
fossil - gem
mineral - stone
drink - sport

flag - seal - quarter
name - nickname
motto - language
museum - jewelry
hall of fame 
song - instrument
bread - dessert
 

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