by Bret “T-Bone” Amundson
Mouth calling coyotes
It could be a case of cabin fever finally breaking through, but I was itching to get outside this weekend.
It could also be that I squeezed out every last drop of the traditional fall hunting seasons, then immediately got sucker punched with a cold that knocked me out for a week. Luckily it was the day after the pheasant season closed.
I haven’t had the chance to ice fish in the past much, but I plan on changing that quickly, with at least two trips planned within the next 3 weeks.
One activity that has piqued my outdoors-tinged interest, is predator hunting. Managing the coyote population is not only healthy for coyotes, but also for deer, ducks and pheasants.
And it’s fun.
Choosing how to lure them in is generally a question of economics. I’d be the first to set down an electronic call and hide nearby if I owned one. Coyotes are not an easy target, which is probably another reason I want to spend more time doing it. They’re smart, cautious and possess superpower-like hearing and eyesight. Using an ecall can help even the balance. But there are those that prefer to go the old school route and breathe from the diaphragm.
A conversation a few years ago with Donovan Schumacher involved an invite to put on snow camo and do some mid-winter hunting. The one opportunity we had saw us load the rifles into his trusty hunting truck and bump our way down some backrounds. I was a bit unsure when we climbed out at the first stand without an ecaller.
All fears were forgotten when he brought a mature dog into range on our 3rd stop that day. Unfortunately his calling was better than my shooting and we came home empty handed. But I was hooked and realized that, yes, you can call in a coyote with a mouth call.
Plans were made for a quick trip out recently. We only had time for a couple of sets, but with temperatures in the single digits and a stiff wind dropping the wind chill below the “donut” (copyright Tom Szymanski), I’m not sure how long we would have stayed out anyway, as this trip was going to include Donovan’s 7 year old son, Spencer.
It’s always great to see guys getting their kids out in the outdoors. It seems to me, a lot of children brought up this way end up knowing what’s right and wrong in this messed up world. When accompanied by a 7 year old out on a harsh afternoon in January and not a single complaint gets uttered, I know something is being done right.
We didn’t call any coyotes in on this day, but it beats sitting around on the couch. Full disclosure: We did alternate between an ecaller and a mouth call to try and change our luck a bit. I think the mouth call had a more realistic sound to it, even if Donovan was relegated to perfecting it in the garage in order to save his marriage.
Luckily Cory Loeffler (DRC Call Company) had some success and let us use his pictures.
I recently had the chance to speak to Fred Eichler (Predator Nation TV) for an interview that will air on Minnesota Sporting Journal Radio the weekend of February 16th. This guy whacks em and stacks em. He’s got some great advice for those wanting to get into predator hunting, including the relatively low cost involved.
Grab your deer hunting rifle, pick up a mouth call for $10 – $15 and find a good spot. You may not always call in a coyote, but that’s the way hunting goes right?
Don’t get me wrong, I am saving up for a FoxPro, but there’s no question that calling in a coyote, or other predator, with a mouth call is on the bucket list. Of course then I’ll probably want to do it with my bow.
This could take a while. And I’m ok with that.
Bret “T-Bone” Amundson