To successfully hunt coyotes during winter, it’s often easier—and more effective—to leave the predator calls at home
#6 Long-range shooting
To be a complete coyote hunter, the ability to take animals at long distances is an important skill. Whether you’re ambushing, baiting or stalking, opportunities for long shots will inevitably arise, and any properly set up coyote rifle should be capable of putting fur on the ground out to 500 metres. As we all know, however, the shooter is usually the limiting factor.
Along with a rifle and ammunition combination capable of sub-minute-of-angle accuracy, there are several other items that can help you make long shots. These include a laser rangefinder, a riflescope that can be dialed in to compensate for bullet drop, and a rifle support system, such as a bipod. But even having all these aids isn’t much good unless you practise shooting with them.
Shot opportunities at distant coyotes are often fleeting, so you’ll increase your success if you can quickly range, dial and shoot. Shots of 800 to 1,000 metres aren’t impossible, but to make them, shooters need specialized rifles and exceptional skills, particularly when it comes to reading wind and mirage. The key for most hunters is to start practising at distances that challenge them, even if it’s only 200 to 300 metres. That means spending time on a rifle range and taking long shots under simulated field conditions. The skills you learn there will quickly become very useful in the field.
Alberta contributor Al Voth is an avid predator and varmint hunter.