Coyote Scat: How to Tell if a Coyote Pooped in Your Yard

Written by Jennifer Gaeng
Updated: November 27, 2022
© Jim Cumming/Shutterstock.com
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Types of Wild Dogs
Coyote feces is also known as scat or droppings

©iStock.com/jamesvancouver

Key Points

  • Clever and highly adaptable, coyotes have become an urban fixture in several towns and cities.
  • Opportunistic feeders, they are not above attempting to help themselves to poultry or even a pet or two.
  • Their droppings can contain dangerous microbes and protective gloves and clothing must be worn to remove them following which they must be burnt and the clothing washed.

Coyotes are one of North America‘s most sentient creatures. They are smaller than the gray wolf and other wolves like the red wolf.

If you want to know if there are coyotes in your region, keep an eye out for coyote feces (called scat or droppings). Coyote scat indicates coyote presence in the vicinity.

The main issue with finding coyote poop is identifying it. Continue reading to learn how to spot coyote scat.

How to Tell if a Coyote Pooped in Your Yard

Coyote Scat: Coyote Poop

©Amelia Martin/Shutterstock.com

Coyote droppings resemble a knotted rope with multiple pieces. They’re big and tubular.  Coyote droppings are usually 3/4 to 1-1/2 inches in diameter and 3 to 5 inches long.

Male coyote poo is larger than female coyote poo, measuring 6 to 12 inches in length depending on the coyote’s size. Their poop has long curly tapering ends, which distinguishes it from other scats.

Coyote feces may contain hair and bones from prey such as rodents, shrews, and rabbits. You may also find seeds, grass, nuts, fruits, and berries that they eat to get rid of intestinal worms.

Is Coyote Scat Dangerous?

Do Coyotes Hunt in Packs
Properly disposing of coyote scat from your property is crucial if you have pets or children as it can carry rabies and other diseases.

©Jim Cumming/Shutterstock.com

Does it indicate something bad to have a coyote scat in your yard? A coyote’s scat is a sure sign of the animal’s presence. If this is the case, you should take the required precautions because coyotes are known to attack smaller animals such as chickens, dogs, cats, rabbits, and others.

Coyote Scat Risks

Many individuals, especially those who live near coyote populations, doubt the safety of this feces. So, coyote scat identification is vital since their poop is quite contagious. It carries viruses and germs harmful to other animals and humans.

These include the following:

  • Heartworm: The parasitic worms Dirofilaria immitis owe their name to the fact that they head straight for the heart, lungs, and the surrounding blood vessels of their host. While there, they reproduce, and grow to alarming lengths with 12 inches being the maximum. They are transmitted from one pet to another by mosquito bites and their symptoms include coughing, tiredness, and even difficulty breathing. Cats, dogs, and ferrets are especially affected by heartworms.
  • Parvovirus: Highly infectious, this parasite which is also resistant to heat, cold, and dryness, can be transmitted through infected surfaces, or the fur of an infected canine. Symptoms include abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea, fever, and frequent vomiting.

How to Get Rid of Coyote Scat

Coyote Scat - A Young Coyote Pooping
It is important to follow certain precautions before disposing of coyote scat. Always wear gloves and a mask when handling animal excrement.

©yhelfman/Shutterstock.com

Like coyote scat photographs reveal, they include tiny particles that can be harmful to humans. So, when cleaning up feces in your yard, you must follow simple safety precautions.

In no case should you remove the poop with your hands. Don’t sniff it or put it near your face or open skin either. Remove it with gloves, shovels, and bags.

Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  • Put on gloves and a mask. You may also wear disposable boots or cover them.
  • If the feces are dry, wet with warm water.
  • Remove the excrement using a shovel then torch it. The flames will destroy any tapeworms.
  • The area should be cleaned with hot water and disinfectant.
  • Remove gloves and wash hands in hot soapy water.
  • Also wash your clothes separately.

How to Keep Coyotes Off Your Property

Do Coyotes Hunt in Packs
If you want to keep coyotes away, one thing you can do is invest in a sturdy fence.

©iStock.com/GatorDawg

Coyotes can be deterred from the area in several ways including:

  • Invest in a Sturdy Fence
  • Make Sure Your Property Is Well Kept
  • Use a Coyote Repellent Spray
  • Bring All Pets Indoors
  • Bring in a Watch Dog
  • Use a Water Sprinkler That Is Motion Activated

Dealing with Coyote and Their Poop Through Pest Control

coyote standing in the field
Seeking advice from a trained professional is best before removing any wild animal scat from your property.

©iStock.com/SteveByland

If you’re here, it’s likely that you’ve seen signs of coyotes (such as their excrement) on your property. If it’s a rare occurrence, you may be able to manage it on your own without the assistance of others. However, it’s always a clever idea to seek the advice of a trained professional.

Conclusion

Wild Dog Breeds: Coyote
It is vital to take preventative and active measures to ensure coyotes do not become regular visitors on your property,

©JayPierstorff/Shutterstock.com

The scat of other animals can be distinguished from that of a coyote if you keep these things in mind. Hopefully, the information in this post has helped you identify coyote droppings. After finding their excrement in your yard, it’s time to take the proper precautions to ensure they don’t return to your property again.

Because coyotes have a reputation for attacking smaller animals and pets, it’s important to be cautious and take preventative actions to ensure they don’t become regular visitors to your property.

Up Next:

Chinchilla Poop: Everything You’ve Ever Wanted to Know

Sheep Poop: Everything You’ve Ever Wanted to Know

Skunk Poop: Everything You’ve Ever Wanted to Know


The Featured Image

Do Coyotes Hunt in Packs
Coyote pack (Canis latrans) standing in a grassy green field in the golden light of autumn in Canada.
© Jim Cumming/Shutterstock.com

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About the Author

A substantial part of my life has been spent as a writer and artist, with great respect to observing nature with an analytical and metaphysical eye. Upon close investigation, the natural world exposes truths far beyond the obvious. For me, the source of all that we are is embodied in our planet; and the process of writing and creating art around this topic is an attempt to communicate its wonders.

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