You would think that a species of animal that tends to hunt in packs would be a threat to humans venturing into the wild. Couple that information with the coyotes close relation to the big bad wolf and it’s easy to see where the fear is born. But the coyote, while being an aggressive predator, has continued to show an extreme separation from humans in a natural wild environment. While rare in perspective, coyote attacks on humans have taken place.
Attacks of any type are typically broken down into categories and are often perceived or interpreted differently by victims or reports.
An exploratory attack is often heard when speaking of shark attacks. It’s the event that takes place when the animal is not convinced that it’s intended target is actually a viable source of prey. While the coyote might bite or nip it’s victim the confrontation will end at that point. In short the lone coyote realizes that the subject is either not a food source or in fact is a larger predator that simply isn’t worth the risk.
A predatory attack is just as it sounds. The coyote attacks with full intentions of preying on the target. Unlike the exploratory attack these predatory motives are seldom broken-off barring a change in circumstances where the coyote may realize he may be over-powered or, so to speak, has bitten off more than he can chew. Predatory attacks on humans are the rarest form of documented attacks.
A defensive attack usually occurs when the coyote feels threatened. This could have many scenarios such as the animal defending it’s pups or accidentally cornering the coyote in a canyon, den, or abandoned out-building. As with all animals, and humans, there is a fight or flight scenario. It’s the moment where your brain decodes the immediate information signaling that the time to either get away or fight has arrived. Surprising a coyote that is injured or feeding could result in a defensive attack especially when the animal has no quick escape route.
And of course there is also the possibility of attack by an unhealthy animal. This could be a coyote that is starving or sick. Any animal that is desperate for a meal will extend itself to greater lengths for a meal. This may result in a coyote even attempting to prey on targets that would typically not be found in their designated range of prey animals or, in rare cases, humans.
While we understand the complexity of animals illnesses we typically focus on the case of rabies when any animal acts out of it’s natural pattern of characteristics. It’s not natural for a coyote to charge into a crowd of people and start attacking. This behavior is usually triggered by underlying circumstances such as a result of rabies.
While we understand the classification of the attacks the actual event also falls into it’s own clarified category. A scratch from a coyote running past you that nipped as it moved towards safety obviously isn’t classified the same as an attack that resulted in a fatality.
As far as geographically speaking in terms of coyote attacks you might be surprised that California leads the way in attacks. In fact more documented coyote attacks have taken place in California than the rest of the United States and Canada combined. No preference or established percentage base has been established between the attacks on children, men, women, or elderly.
To better understand and view these differences and scenarios we have gathered the following articles and will continue to add more as discovered. If you have a credible lead of a coyote attack not listed feel free to contact us with the information.
Toronto Musician Killed By Coyotes
Teen Attacked by Coyote in New Hampshire
Greenburgh Coyote Attacked Woman
New Brunswick Coyote Attack
Denver Boy Attacked By Coyote
Coyote Attacks California Toddler
Elderly Woman Attacked By Rabid Coyote
Coyote Attacks New Jersey Child
Coyote Attacks Grandfather And Grandson
Coyote Attacks Two In Boulder
Coyote Attacks Massachusetts Girl
Teen Attacked By Rabid Coyote
Coyote Attacks Colorado Jogger
Coyote Attacks Aurora Man
Coyote Attacks Teenager In Cape Breton