Looking for a little wildlife inspiration? Check out these 15 animals that are similar to coyotes.
Coyotes are an amazing species, but they aren’t the only one out there!
These other animals share some of the same characteristics and features as coyotes, making them equally fascinating creatures. So get ready to be surprised by some of the similarities between these other animals and coyotes.
The Coyote (Canis latrans) is also known as the Prairie Wolf and is found throughout North and Central America.
Coyotes also occur as far north as Alaska and Canada. The name ‘Coyote’ is from the Mexican Spanish language and its scientific name means ‘barking dog’.
The coyote is one of 8 species of the genus Canis. Four of these are jackals of Europe, Africa and Asia.
Other members of the genus include the Grey Wolf (Canis lupus), the Red Wolf (Canis rufus) and all the breeds of the domestic dog (Canis familiaris).
Coyotes measure around 75 – 87 centimetres (30 – 34 inches) in length and weigh on average 7 – 21 kilograms (15 – 46 pounds). They have a tail length of 40 – 60 inches which becomes bushy and is held horizontally when the Coyote displays aggression. Coyotes in the north of their range are generally larger than southern species.
Coyotes are known to reach their maximum size within their first year.
A coyotes fur varies in color from a greyish brown to a yellow/grey color. Their throats and underparts are generally lighter in color, mostly white. They have reddish/brown forelegs, sides of head, muzzle and feet.
Their under fur is beige and they have long, black tipped guard hairs that form a black dorsal stripe and a dark cross on the shoulder area. Coyotes have a tail with a black tip on the end. Their tail has a scent gland situated on its’ dorsal base.
The Grey Wolf (Canis Lupus), also known as the ‘Timber Wolf’ is the largest of the wild dog family. Grey Wolves were once in abundance and distributed over North America, Eurasia and the Middle East.
However, because of human-related activity such as destruction of habitat and excessive hunting, Grey Wolves now only occupy a fraction of their former range.
The Grey Wolf is listed as an endangered species under the 1973 Endangered Species Act as they continue to be hunted in many areas of the world as a perceived threat to livestock, humans and also for sport.
As extremely adaptable animals, Grey Wolves generally live in mountains, temperate forests and grasslands.
The Eastern Wolf (Canis lupus lycaon), also known as Eastern Canadian Wolf or Eastern Canadian Red Wolf is a subspecies of the Grey Wolf.
Sometimes it is also viewed as a result of historical hybridizations between grey wolves and red wolves or coyotes. The Eastern Wolf is recognized as a potential distinct species, but close related to Red Wolf.
The Eastern Wolf mainly occupies the area in and around Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario and also ventures into adjacent parts of Quebec, Canada. The Eastern Wolf also may be present in Minnesota and Manitoba.
In the past, the Eastern Wolf might have ranged south into the United States, however, after the arrival of Europeans, these wolves were heavily persecuted and became extirpated from the United States. In Canada, exact numbers of Eastern Canadian Wolves are unknown.
The Ethiopian wolf (Canis Simensis) is known by many names in its range. Locally it is known as ‘ky kebero’, which means red jackal.
The Ethiopian Wolf is one of the rarest and most endangered of all canids.
The numerous names reflect previous uncertainty about their taxonomic position, however, they are now thought to be related to the wolves of the genus Canis, rather than foxes they resemble. It is thought that the Ethiopian Wolf may be a descendant of the Grey Wolf.
The Ethiopian Wolf is found in the Afro-alpine regions of Ethiopia and Eritrea, about 10,000 feet (3,000 metres) above sea level. Only about twelve populations, totaling about 450 adults, remain. Ethiopian Wolves tend to live in open moorlands where vegetation is less that 0.25 metres high.
The Eurasian Wolf (Canis lupus lupus), also known as the Common Wolf, European Wolf, Carpathian Wolf, Steppes Wolf, Tibetan Wolf and Chinese Wolf is a subspecies of the Grey Wolf (Canis lupus). Currently, it has the largest range among wolf subspecies and is the most common in Europe and Asia, ranging through Western Europe, Scandinavia, Russia, China, Mongolia and the Himalayan Mountains.
Originally spread over most of Eurasia, with a southern limit of the Himalayas, the Hindukush, the Koppet Dag, the Caucasus, the Black Sea and the Alps, it has been pushed back from most of Western Europe and Eastern China, surviving mostly in Central Asia.
The Italian Wolf (Canis lupus italicus) also known as the Apennine Wolf, is a subspecies of the Grey Wolf found in the Apennine Mountains in Italy.
It was first described in 1921 and recognised as a distinct subspecies in 1999. Recently due to an increase in population, the subspecies has also been spotted in areas of Switzerland.
During recent years, Italian wolves have also established themselves in Southern France, particularly in the Parc National du Mercantour. It is federally protected in all three countries.
The Red Wolf (Canis Rufus) is the rarest and most endangered of all the wolf species.
It is thought that the Red Wolf’s original distribution included much of eastern North America, where Red Wolves were found from Pennsylvania in the east, Florida in the south and Texas in the west.
On the basis of further study, the Red Wolf’s historic range is now thought to have extended further north into the northeastern USA and extreme eastern Canada.
In the last century, however, persecution, habitat destruction and hybridizations with Coyotes have brought the Red Wolf to the brink of extinction.
The Maned Wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus) is the largest canid in South America.
The Maned Wolf resembles a large dog with reddish fur.
The Maned wolves distribution includes southern Brazil, Paraguay, Peru and Bolivia east of the Andes.
The Maned Wolf is an endangered species and its range once included Uruguay and northern Argentina, although IUCN lists it as ‘lower risk’. The Maned Wolf is the only species in the genus Chrysocyon.
A Jackal is a small to medium sized canid found in Africa, Asia and southeastern Europe. It is Known as a ‘Bweha’ in Swahili.
There are three species of Jackal, the Common Jackal (Canis aureus), the Side-striped Jackal (Canis adustus) and the Black-backed Jackal (Canis mesomelas).
Common Jackals are also known as Golden Jackals, Asiatic Jackals and Oriental Jackals.
Jackals are similar to the African ecological niche as Coyotes are in North America.
The Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) is a member of the Canidae family and is a part of the order Carnivora within the class of mammals.
Members of the family are called ‘canids’ and include dogs, wolves, foxes, coyotes, dingoes, jackals and African Wild Dogs.
The Red fox is the most widely distributed and populous canid in the world, having colonised large parts of Europe, America, Asia and Africa. In the British Isles, where there are no longer any other native wild canids, it is referred to simply as ‘the fox’. The Red Fox pre-breeding season population is estimated to be 258,000.
A male fox is called a ‘Dog’, a female fox is called a ‘Vixen’, a baby fox is called either a ‘Kit’, ‘Pup’ or ‘Cub’. A group of foxes is called a ‘Skulk’.
African Wild Dog
The African Wild Dog (Lycaon pictus) is a mammal native only to Africa. It is a member of the canidae family which also includes dogs, coyotes, dingos, jackals and wolves.
The African Wild Dog is known by other names such as the Painted Hunting Dog, African Hunting Dog, Cape Hunting Dog and Painted Wolf. In Swahili it is referred to as ‘Mbwa mwilu’.
The African Wild Dogs scientific name ‘Lycaon pictus’ comes from the Greek language for ‘wolf’ and Latin for ‘painted’. The African Wild Dog is the only species in the Genus ‘Lycaon’.
The Fennec Fox (Vulpes zerda) is a small nocturnal fox found in the Sahara desert of North Africa. It is the smallest species of canid in the world.
The Fennec Fox has large ears which help to dissipate heat and also help to locate prey. The Fennec Fox is nocturnal and feeds on small mammals, birds, reptiles and insects.
It is estimated that there are only around 250,000 Fennec Foxes in the wild.
The Fennec Fox is not considered to be endangered but its numbers are declining due to habitat loss and hunting for its fur.
The Coywolf is a canid hybrid resulting from the crossing of a coyote and a gray wolf. It is also commonly referred to as the ‘woyote’ or the ‘coydog’.
The Coywolf is found in North America, specifically in the eastern United States and southeastern Canada.
The coywolf is larger than the coyote but smaller than the gray wolf. It has a wider snout and longer legs than the coyote and its coat is more gray in color than brown.
The Coywolf is an apex predator and its diet consists primarily of deer, rabbits, rodents and birds.
Coywolves are more timid around humans than coyotes and wolves, but have been known to attack people if they feel threatened.
The Dingo (Canis lupus dingo) is a member of the dog family and commonly described as an Australian Wild Dog. Dingoes are found in all parts of Australia (excluding Tasmania), although they did not originate from there.
Dingoes did not arrive in Australia with Aboriginal people, but were transported there from mainland Asia between 3,500 and 4,000 years ago.
Dingoes can also be found throughout the remaining natural forests of Southeast Asia.
Australian dingoes tend to be larger than those in Asia. Dingoes have features that resemble both dogs and wolves, although dingoes have a longer muzzle, longer canine teeth and a flatter skull.
The raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides), also known as the Chinese raccoon dog, Asian raccoon dog, mangut (its Evenki name), neoguri (its Korean name) or the common raccoon dog, is a canid that is found in mainland East Asia and northern Vietnam. It is one of two extant species in the genus Nyctereutes, alongside the Japanese raccoon dog (N. viverrinus).
This aniimal is actually much more closely related to the true fox rather than the American raccoon as its name suggests, but it is named so for the resemblance of its masked face to that of the common raccoon. There are four subspecies of the common raccoon dog — the Ussuri raccoon dog, the Yunnan raccoon dog, the Korean raccoon dog, and the Chinese raccoon dog, which is the nominate species.
The scientific name “Nyctereutes procyonoides” translates as “night wanderer” in Greek — “nykt” (night) and “ereutes” (wanderer).
This species belongs to the family Canidae and the order Carnivora. They are omnivores, feeding on a wide range of animals as well as fruits, nuts and berries. The raccoon dog prefers forest, forest borders, or dense vegetation as its habitat.
It is not an endangered species and is listed as Least Concern by the IUCN Red List.
The domestic dog (Canis familiaris) is the most common and widespread canid, with a global population of over 900 million.
Dogs were domesticated from wolves around 15,000 years ago. They are used for hunting, herding, guarding, and as working animals in a variety of other roles.
Dogs come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, with over 400 different recognized breeds. They are the most diverse mammalian species on Earth.
The domestic dog is the most common pet in the world and is also widely used in law enforcement and as assistance animals.
Dogs are also used in sports, such as sledding, racing, agility and flyball.