Coyotes in Utah

No one who has heard the eerie cry of a coyote during its hunt in Zion can ever forget it. The high-pitched yip, yip and howl are just plain spooky.

No one who has heard the eerie cry of a coyote during its hunt can ever forget it. The high-pitched yip, yip and alternate keening howl are just plain spooky. Perhaps that is one reason why this moderately sized canis has such an oversized reputation.

The most verbal of all wild mammals in North American, coyotes speak to each other to announce where they are, to great each other when meeting, and to tell others of their territory claims. In most cases, humans should welcome them as they eat a variety of small rodents including mice, rats, rabbits, snakes and insects.

They may hunt deer in packs, where they pursue the deer until it tires or herd it to other team members. They have been known to establish "hunting partnerships" with badgers, letting the badgers dig the prey out of its hole while the coyote chases it once it is exposed. Coyotes have expanded throughout most of North America and even into Latin America, so they aren't as exotic as they once seemed. They've filled in the hole left by the eradication of the wolf, which was once common throughout the continent.

They are great foragers who take advantage of the scraps, carrion, wandering small pets and young game, considered opportunistic feeders.

They can be found in deserts, forests, urban settings and grasslands where they raise litters of four to seven pups in earthen dens. The pups appear after about eight weeks and are taught by both parents throughout the summer.



Wild Cats in Utah, but Elusive

Utah has three species of native cats, the mountain lion, or cougar; the lynx; and the bobcat, a cousin to the lynx.


Chipmunks, Beaver, and Porcupines in Utah

Forty percent of all Utah mammals are rodents. You can distinguish rodents by the way they eat.

Mule deer in Bryce Canyon National Park. Photo by James Phelps [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Mule Deer Inhabit Utah

This elegant animal is one of the most common in the area and can often be seen grazing on the lawns in front of park buildings.

Bat flying in the sky

Bats in Utah

Look to the sky at dusk and those small birds you see may actually be bats. You can distinguish bats from birds by their flight patterns.

A lizard in Zion National Park. Photo by Elisabeth Kwak

Reptiles in Southern Utah

Lizards and snakes flourish in Zion Canyon. Chances are, as you walk the many trails, you'll see one of the 16 species of lizards or 13 snake species.

A Black-Footed Ferret in Coyote Basin, Utah

Ferrets and Pine Martens in Utah

The black-footed ferret (the French word for "thief") was once considered the rarest land mammal in North America.

Blonde-colored Black Bear

Black Bears in Utah

Unlike the grizzly, the black bear is still fairly common in the large forested areas of Utah. Rarely black, instead they can be blonde or chocolate brown.


Pikas and Jackrabbits in Utah

The fertile grasslands, woodsy forests and lots of streams in Utah allow the jackrabbit, pika and cottontail to flourish.

Pronghorn antelope in Utah

Pronghorn Antelope in Utah

The popular big game animal known as the "pronghorn" frequents southern Utah.