How Fast Can A Coyote Run? Coyote Running Speed

You’ve been sitting in the stand for going on an hour. Finally, you see it. Out of the corner of your eye, spot movement.

It’s a nice-sized coyote, slinking into view to check out the sounds coming from the e-caller you’ve got placed next to a decoy. You’re downwind, and it looks like it’s going to be a perfect shot.

Then, it happens. Your buddy seems to choose the worst possible moment in the world to sneeze. It’s a loud one, too. The ‘yote hears it and practically disappears in front of your eyes it seems to be gone so quick.



It happens to everyone. If you’re like me, one of your first thoughts is: “Wow. How fast can a coyote run, anyways?”

It’s a good question. There’s a reason, after all, that these animals have become so prevalent that many areas allow them to be hunted year-round.

They’re adaptable, thriving even in the face of urban sprawl. They’re sly, avoiding what few predators they have very successfully. Most of all, they’re fast. Let’s take a look at just how fast.


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Coyote Speeds

Average Speeds

Just as with humans, it isn’t very accurate to give one number and then say that number is the end-all-be-all answer to how fast coyotes run.

Firstly, it will vary based on the age and health of the animal, as well as the terrain. It can also vary based on the distance the coyote it running.

Think of the way your own running speed differs if you plan to travel 5 or 6 miles versus when you only plan to dash a hundred yards or so to catch your errant puppy.

If you know that you plan to travel a great distance, you will compensate by slowing down. You know that you cannot run full-tilt forever. A coyote does the same thing.

To this end, it’s useful to know some general rules about how quickly coyotes run based on different situations. Let’s use sprinting, moderate, and long distances as examples.


If a coyote is sprinting, it can reach speeds of up to roughly 45 miles per hour. Again, this is dependant upon the coyote, and sprints like this are typically only seen in a “run for your life” scenario.

For a coyote, moderate distances are considered up to a few miles. In order to retain enough stamina to maintain a constant speed, coyotes go slightly slower at this pace--about 20 miles an hour.

When running in excess of 2 or 3 miles, coyotes’ speed drops even lower. The average pace when running this distance is roughly 10 miles and hour.

Of course, while ten miles an hour is still a lot faster than many humans can run for sustained distance, it’s also much slower than the coyote’s sprinting speed of 45 miles an hour.

Related: How To Bait Coyotes For A Successful Hunt

45 Mile/hour
Sprinting
20 Mile/hour
Moderate Distances
10 Mile/hour
Long Distances

Top Recorded Speed

Coyote hunting

The fastest officially recorded speed of a coyote is 43 mph, over roughly ¼ mile. Keep in mind, though, the operative word there is “official”.

There a lots of accounts of hunters and outdoorsman who, encountering a coyote in the wild when armed with a radar gun, have reported higher speeds edging up near 45-47 mph.

This could be due in part to a difference in the ability of individual coyotes, or even simply to the terrain in which the speeds were recorded.

For instance, even if you were to take one individual coyote and measure its speed every single time it ran, you would find variances.

An Olympic athlete who has won his five previous competition may still have a bad day and lose a race. He might have an injury or some other problem that makes him temporarily slower.

Given that the speed of just one animal isn’t always reliable, it’s a good idea to take claims about a coyote’s absolute top speed with a grain of salt.

This top recorded speed is particularly impressive when you consider the fact that a coyote is relatively small. Other animals than are recorded around this speeds are much larger, like the elk.

You see, when you run the speed can be measured in a standard like MPH. However, a baby mouse that is flung through the air at 5 MPH is going to feel like it’s going a lot faster than a human jogging at the same speed.

Check out this website to what a given animal’s top speed would feel like to you, if you were to travel proportionately fast compared to your body size.

FURTHER READING 

➜ How To Attract Coyote: Predator Hunt Like A Pro

What Does Coyote Poop Look Like: How To Identify Scat

➜ 5 Top Coyote Hunting Dogs That Are Proven To Be Tremendous

How does the coyote's diet affect its running ability?

The coyote's diet affects its running ability in a few ways. For one, coyotes need a lot of protein in order to build and maintain their muscle mass. This high-protein diet comes in handy when they're sprinting after prey. Coyotes will also consume more food when they are preparing for a big hunt, so they canstore up the energy they need to run fast.

Additionally, a coyote's diet can affect its running ability because what it eats can help or hinder its stamina. For example, if a coyote consumes a lot of carbohydrates in its diet, it will have more energy to run for longer periods of time. However, if a coyote primarilyconsumes fat, it will have less energy and won't be able to run as long or as fast.

Coyotes typically hunt in short bursts, so they don't need a lot of stamina to be successful predators. However, their diet still plays a role in how well they can run. By consuming a high-protein diet, coyotesare able to maintain their muscle mass and keep their energy levels up. This allows them to run at top speeds for short periods of time, which is perfect for chasing down prey.

Do coyotes ever run with their prey?

Coyotes will sometimes run with their prey in order to tire it out before killing it. This strategy is knownas "pursuit predation." By running alongside their prey, coyotes can gradually slow it down until it is too tired to run any further. At this point, the coyote will be able to catch up and kill the animal.

Pursuit predation is most commonly seen in coyotes that are hunting small animals, such as mice or rabbits. Larger prey, such as deer, are more difficult to tire out and usually require a different hunting strategy.

Coyotes are built for running, and they use this skill to their advantage when hunting. By chasing their prey until it is too tired to run any further, coyotes can take down animals that are much larger than they are. This makes them one of the most successful predators in the animal kingdom.

What other factors affect a coyote's running ability?

There are a few other factors that can affect a coyote's running ability. One is the terrain that they are running on. Coyotes typically live in open areas with little vegetation, so they have plenty of space to run. If a coyoteis running in an area with lots of trees or other obstacles, it will have to slow down to avoid them. This can make it easier for prey to escape.

Another factor that can affect a coyote's running ability is the weather. Extreme heat or cold can make it difficult for coyotes to run at top speeds. If it is too hot, they will overheat and need to rest more often. If it is too cold, their muscles will not work as efficiently and they will tire more easily.

Finally, the weight of a coyote can also affect its running ability. A coyote that is carrying a lot of weight, such as when it is pregnant or has just eaten a large meal, will not be able to run as fast as a coyote that is lighter. This is because the heavier coyote has to use more energy to move its body.

There are a few factors that can affect a coyote's running ability, including the terrain, the weather, and the weight of the coyote. By understanding these factors, we can better understand how a coyote hunts and how it is affected by its environment.

The Urban Legends

Pack of howling coyotes

Of course, you can also choose to take into account the urban legends surrounding particularly ornery coyotes. Sometimes it seems like the darn things have a sixth sense for when you take aim.

A lot of urban legends surrounding the speed of a coyote really give a nod to the intelligence of this interesting creature.

For instance, while they can sprint quickly enough to get away from many danger, sometimes they just plain appear uninterested in running away.

Check out this site for some interesting first-hand account of strange ‘yote happenings. These include a couple interesting stories where the coyote plays at being too slow in order to injure the hunting dogs pursuing it, as well as other tall tales.

Whether or not you believe them, it is pretty interesting to consider that so many people have stories about these wily animals either flying away at super-sonic speeds the moment you cock your gun, or circling back around to tear into your hunting dogs.

Best of all, these urban legends are reminders not to underestimate your target. Just because a coyote can run fast, doesn’t mean it’ll always be running away from you.

It won’t always come to call, won’t always do what you expect, and will definitely not give you a boring hunting experience.

That’s part of what makes hunting coyotes so much fun. It takes skill to get them to reveal themselves, and real stealth to get close enough for a good shot.

Do you have any coyote urban legends of your own? Leave a comment and let us know!

If not, take a look at the videos that really showcase the amazing top speeds of a coyote running at 100% effort:

FAQ

How fast can a coyote sprint?

Coyotes can sprint up to 43 mph.

How long can a coyote sustain a sprint?

A coyote can only maintain a sprint for about 1 minute. After that, their heart rate will be at 160 beats per minute and they need to rest.

What is the best way to hunt coyotes?

The best way to hunt coyotes is to use stealth and patience. Coyotes are intelligent creatures and will not always do what you expect. It takes skill to get them to reveal themselves, and real stealth to get close enough for a good shot.

Is a house cat faster than a coyote?

A house cat is not faster than a coyote. A coyote can sprint up to 43 mph, whereas a house cat can only sprint up to 30 mph.

Are coyote fast?

Yes, coyotes are fast. They can sprint up to 43 mph and maintain that speed for about a mile. This makes them perfect for catching prey that might otherwise outrun them. Although they can't keep up with the likes of elk or antelope, they can still run down most other animals.

How fast does a coyote walk?

A coyote walks at about 5 mph. This is much slower than their sprinting speed, but still fast enough to catch most prey.

Can coyotes climb trees?

Coyotes are not known to climb trees, but they are very agile and can jump high distances. This makes them excellent climbers if they need to be.

How high of a fence can a coyote jump?

Coyotes can jump high fences, up to 12 feet. This means that they can easily get over most fences that people put up to keep them out of their yard.

Do coyotes howl?

Yes, coyotes howl. They use howling as a way to communicate with other coyotes, as well as to scare

Are coyotes faster than dogs?

Coyotes are not faster than dogs. In fact, they can only sprint up to 43 mph, while dogs can sprint up to 45 mph. However, coyotes are much more agile and can jump high distances, which gives them an advantage over dogs in many ways.

Are coyotes fast runners?

Yes, coyotes are very fast runners. They can sprint up to 43 mph, which is faster than most other animals. This makes them perfect for catching prey that might otherwise outrun them. Although they can't keep up with the likes of elk or antelope, they can still run down most other animals.

Do coyotes eatcats?

Coyotes do not specifically eat cats, but they will prey on them if they are available. Cats are not their preferred food, but they will eat them if necessary.

Do coyotes run in packs?

Coyotes typically run in packs of 2-5 animals. However, they can also run alone or in pairs.

What is the top speed of a coyote?

The top speed of a coyote is 43 mph. This makes them one of the fastest animals in North America.

How many miles can a coyote run?

A coyote can only maintain a sprint for about 1 mile. After that, their heart rate will be at 160 beats per minute and they need to rest.

Can a coyote climb a ladder?

Coyotes are not known to climb ladders, but they are very agile and can jump high distances. This makes them excellent climbers if they need to be.

Which is faster a coyote or a fox?

A coyote is faster than a fox. A coyote can sprint up to 43 mph, whereas a fox can only sprint up to 30 mph.

Do coyotes walk in a straight line? 

No, coyotes do not walk in a straight line. They are very agile and can jump high distances, which allows them to cover a lot of ground quickly. This also makes them difficult to hunt.

What is the average lifespan of a coyote?

The average lifespan of a coyote is about 5-7 years. However,they can live up to 10 years in the wild.

Can a human become the flash?

No, a human cannot become the flash. The flash is a superhero who has super-speed powers. Only humans with super speed powers could possibly become the flash.

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