Coyotes are part of the landscape in the Maine outdoors.
They’re often seen trotting along gravel roads, across fields and through the woods. Sometimes, their eerie howling can be heard in the distance.
In the vicinity of Chemo Pond, off Route 9, it appears there is a healthy population of coyotes this year.
That statement is backed up by an interesting video submitted by Gordon and Diane Alexander of Eddington.
“We have several other pictures and other videos of coyotes in our hunting area,” Gordon Alexander said of the video.
The footage, taken in the middle of the night on Sept. 24, shows five coyotes hanging out in camera range for approximately 30 seconds.
The animals appear to be enjoying a bit of play time.
“It looks like the camera captured the social interactions of a coyote family group, which is typically comprised of the adult male and female and young of the year,” said Shevenell Webb, furbearer biologist for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.
“Adult females have one litter of four to eight pups in the spring, and both parents help care for the pups throughout the spring and summer. The pups grow rapidly and usually disperse in the fall.”
Gordon Alexander, who said the presence of the dogs appears to have coincided with a reduction in the number of recent local deer sightings, called the footage “eerie to watch.”
“Not sure if the coyotes are the reason but we have seen fewer deer this year compared [with] other years,” said Alexander, who has been hunting the area for 15 years.
“[I] watched a spike horn being pursued by a coyote while in my tree stand,” he said.
Webb said that coyotes, while often maligned, serve a role in the Maine outdoors.
“Coyotes play an important role in the environment as predators and scavengers, and they eat a wide variety of animals and plants depending on the season,” Webb said.