Evaluating coyote management strategies using a spatially explicit, individual-based, socially structured population model

Fred F. Knowlton, Utah State University
Mary M. Conner
Michael R. Ebinger


Managing canid predation on livestock is the leading challenge facing canid conservation worldwide. However, removing canids, and coyotes in particular, to reduce livestock predation is environmentally and socially controversial. In addition, it can be expensive and logistically difficult to field evaluate the myriad of potential selective, spatial, and temporal canid management strategies. Here, we develop a spatially explicit, individual-based simulation model to evaluate commonly used or promoted coyote control strategies. We began with an already constructed non-spatial, individual-based stochastic coyote population model that incorporated behavioral features, such as dominance and territoriality. We added a spatial component and enhanced the social rule set to more realistically model coyote movement and territory replacement. This model merges coyote spatial, social, and population ecology into a management framework...