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What is a Coywolf?

What is a Coywolf?

While the term coywolves may sound like a term for coquettish wolves in granny bonnets, it is actually employed to describe a coyote/wolf hybrid.  Under many people’s radar, coywolves are flourishing in southeastern Canada and in the northeastern U.S.  Rumors abound that there is even one lonely coywolf living in New York City’s Central Park.

Also known as coydogs and eastern coyotes, these hybrids are bigger than coyotes, but smaller than wolves. Like wolves they are strong enough to hunt deer yet like coyotes they are quite skilled at coexisting in the shadows of human activity. Unlike many hybrid individuals, coywolves are fertile.

The expansion of these hybrids marks the return of wolves to the northeast.  ”It’s kind of interesting that we drove this species from the area and it sort of came back in another form,” says  Roland Kays, curator of mammals at the New York State Museum in Albany and author on the most comprehensive genetic study of these canines.


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Cherise Udell

Cherise Udell is a mom, clean air advocate, anthropologist and feline aficionado with the nomadic habit of taking spontaneous sojourns to unusual destinations. Before her adventures in motherhood, she was an intrepid Amazon jungle guide equipped with a pair of sturdy wellingtons and a 24-inch machete, as well as a volunteer at a rainforest animal rescue center.


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10:21AM PST on Feb 28, 2013

A coy wolf is a coyote/wolf mix, a coy DOG is a coyote/DOG mix. Around here we have both. Coyotes are a real problem, especially with the cattle and our dogs (we lost a dog to a coyote just last summer)

7:27AM PST on Jan 6, 2013

we believe we have at least 2 wolf- coyotes living in the woods by us. wolfpark in indiana identified them as most wolf/coyote. we have pictures and even encountered one black one in the woods eating a deer. bigger then a coyote , but with a coyotish face. we live in northern Il. wolf park says there are coywolves coming down from wisc. though wisc. doesnt acknowledge them!

5:53PM PST on Jan 1, 2013


7:32AM PST on Jan 1, 2013

I think hybrid animals that occur on their own in nature without human persuasion are very interesting. I wonder if there are any around where I live? The only animal close I've seen has been foxes.

3:34PM PST on Dec 27, 2012

Jean-Jacques Rousseau put it best when he said, "You are undone if you once forget that the fruits of the earth belong to us all, and the earth itself to nobody."

10:29AM PST on Dec 23, 2012

thanks for sharing :)

6:07AM PST on Dec 22, 2012

Thank you.

8:20AM PST on Dec 20, 2012

Thank you for sharing.

5:33AM PST on Dec 19, 2012

Very interesting.

12:32PM PST on Dec 17, 2012

I wonder if coywolves are here in northeast, OH farmers are claiming that coyotes are getting as large as 50-60lbs, destroying larger livestock then an usual coyote. I hear lots of lone howls, packs communicating back and forth but haven't visually caught a glimpse yet

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