Food Habits of the Coyote in Tennessee

During 1981-1984, digestive tracts of 262 coyotes (Canis latrans) from Tennessee were examined for food items, and data were assessed in relation to sex, age, seasonal, annual, and spatial variation. Foods with highest percent occurrence were rodent, persimmon (Diospyros virginia), rabbit (Sylvilagus spp), and whitetailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus). There were no differences between sexes and for foods eaten, and only persimmon varied significantly among age classes. Seasonal variation was found for rodent, insect, reptile and amphibian, opossum (Didelphis virginiana), and persimmon. Livestock, insect, and grass varied across years. Little spatial variation in food use was detected, and examination of environmental data with percent occurrence of food items revealed no associations.

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17439