Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Coyote Hunt 1961 Red Hills State Park

Bridgeport Leader January 5, 1961 
Coyote Hunt Scheduled For Red Hill State Park Saturday Morning
“Hubert Caudle, Conservation Officer in Lawrence County, has called for volunteers to assist in hunting coyotes in the Red Hill State Park area Saturday morning January 7, 1961 at 8 AM. All are to meet at the restaurant in the Park with shotguns.

Leaders will be assigned to care for 10 or less persons to the left and right of each. Only shotguns will be used and a large circle will be formed. All persons will be in view when shots were fired it was stated.

There have been a growing number of coyotes in the County with farmers suffering heavy losses. The animals also have been depleting the rabbit and quail population.

Hubert Caudle trapped a 38 pound female coyote on the premises of Red Hill State Park early this week. She was a beautiful species of the destructive breed.

As the officer approached his traps the coyote lunged at him. Several shots from his 38 automatic were required to quiet her. Tracks indicate many more are in the Park area and in Lawrence County according to Mr. Caudle.  Efforts will be made by the Conservation Department to eradicate the area of the species, it was stated.”

Ed Note: Before we get a lot of mail from the PETA people, let me assure you this was written and did occur in 1961.  A review of the Illinois Dept of Natural Resources on- line yielded the following information on the current coyote policy.

“Coyotes are valuable members of the wildlife community and do more good than harm where humans are concerned.  However, they occasionally kill livestock, poultry, and domestic pets, especially where coyotes live in large numbers or in close association with people.  Eliminating all of the coyotes in an area is not a realistic goal because voids will be filled quickly.  Fortunately, removing individuals with “bad behaviors” usually solves a problem even when other coyotes continue to live in an area.

Coyotes are harvested during regulated hunting and trapping seasons. An average of 7,000 coyotes is harvested each year in Illinois. About 75 percent of these are taken by hunters; 25 percent by trappers. The trapping season is restricted to the fall and winter months, while the hunting season is open year-round. A liberal hunting season allows landowners to remove problem animals without having to obtain a special permit. Biologists monitor the population to ensure that hunting and trapping do not negatively impact the population.”