What Smells Keep Coyotes Away – Quick Tips

by Derrick | Last Updated: February 21, 2021

To utilize smells to keep coyotes away the application of wolf urine, ammonia-soaked rags, homemade sprays, as well as moth balls around your property are common smells people have found to deter them.

Coyotes have an excellent sense of smell which makes the use of certain scents an ideal approach at keeping them away, though over time it can be costly due to the upkeep.

Coyotes are an intelligent and adaptive species that have continued to expand their habitat by 40% since the 1950’s. Their population has thrived despite attempted population control efforts by landowners and government institutions.

Coyotes are the ultimate animal able to adapt and thrive in a diverse habitat from the cold of Canada to the deserts of Arizona and in many urban settings. Thriving in these diverse conditions with very little predators in many areas has allowed the population of coyotes to grow almost unchecked. Thus, creating more and more interactions with both humans and domesticated pets which leads people to look into how to protect their property and pets.

Getting rid of coyotes can present a real challenge to landowners.

Many landowners have found it necessary to use more than just smell deterrence to keep them off their property. Let’s look into smell deterrence, then talk about a few other things you can do to assist with a coyote problem.

Why Use Smell Deterrence?

Coyote populations have skyrocketed in recent years and have encroached on both rural and urban areas alike. If you happen to have a coyote as a frequent visitor on your property you may be inclined to exterminate it. However, their territorial and reproductive traits will only cause another coyote to take its place if certain measures aren’t taken to prevent their interest in your land.

Coyotes are drawn to the smell of food on your property, which is why removing any alluring smells (like bird feeders, garbage cans, un-cleaned barbecues, left out pet food, etc.) and replacing them with unpleasant ones is the first step to keeping coyotes away.

Keep in mind if you don’t remove the alluring smells, using deterring smells won’t be nearly as effective. Once you remove anything that may attract coyote prey, or the coyote themselves, you can try the following smell deterrents:

● You can try purchasing and applying wolf urine around the perimeter of your property. Wolf urine can be purchased in liquid or pellet form. The pellets generally last longer, so this is usually the better form to get.

● You can place mothballs in the areas you are trying to rid coyotes from.

● Another way to keep them off the property is to soak sponges or rags in ammonia and hang them around the property where coyotes most frequently visit.

Using the above-mentioned scents can often be expensive as they require re-application. If you are looking to save some money or add another layer of unappealing coyote smells, you can also try the below homemade sprays that are recommended by the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Department.

1. Mix Tabasco sauce with some distilled water and spray the mixture where you are trying to keep the coyotes out or away from.

2. Bring two quarts of water to a boil and add one chopped jalapeno pepper, one chopped onion, and one tablespoon of cayenne pepper to the pot. You will want to boil it for about 20 minutes before draining the liquid into a spray bottle and applying it to the perimeter of your property.

3. You can also try combining eight ounces of dish soap into a gallon of water, as well as eight ounces of castor oil. You can then apply the mixture around the perimeter of your property with a spray bottle.

Other Types of Deterrents Will Yield Better Results (Known as Hazing)

As mentioned above, coyotes are smart creatures who adapt well to all environments. As such, they may prove not to be so easily fooled and continue to roam on your property. Using other types of deterrents along with smell deterrents will yield better results.

There are a few things you can try to keep coyotes off of your property that do not include scents and smells to deter them:

Scare Them Away

With coyotes expanding their habitat into heavily human-populated areas, you may find that some coyotes are not as skittish around humans. An increasing comfort around humans can make it more of a challenge to get them off your property.

If you see a coyote on your property you will want to make it an unpleasant or frightening experience for them by yelling at them or banging loud objects together as you approach. This is known as hazing.
Coyote Deterrent Sounds

There are a number of sounds that will deter a coyote that can be used in conjunction with smell deterrents. These are things such as whistles, air horns, bells or cans filled with objects called shaker cans.

Some individuals have also reported success by leaving radios on, creating ambient noise that may deter a coyote.

Erect a Fence

Coyotes have been known to jump as high as six feet, so the taller the fence the better. To make the fence more coyote proof, you can install what is called a coyote roller meant to keep them from being able to get a grip on the top of the fence to climb it.

You will want to be sure that when you are installing the fence that you install it twelve to eighteen inches into the ground to prevent coyotes from digging under the fence to get inside.

Be sure to trim low hanging tree branches back from ground and away from the fence as coyotes have been known to jump on low hanging branches, using the tree to scale the fence.

Install Coyote Deterrent Lights Around Your Property

Coyotes are nocturnal animals who are most active during dusk. They do not like bright lights which will often deter them from approaching a property. This makes the use of coyote deterrent lights such as Nite Guard solar lights a great addition to smell deterrents. These lights are designed to turn on at dusk and to flash until daybreak as a visual deterrence.

Keep Food and Other Attractants Away From Your Yard

Between these and the smell deterrents mentioned above, getting coyotes to stop visiting you will certainly be made easier if you remove things that will attract coyotes to you yard in the first place.

The first step is to remove food sources, this could be removing trash or putting trash into trash containers that have tight fitting lids that coyotes cannot get into.

Another common coyote attractant is dog food, many people will feed dogs outside and coyotes will often come in to try and get any food that hasn’t been consumed or scrapes that are left over.

Using some preventative measures combined with deterrents, while removing attractants in totality should help you keep coyotes away from your property and your family and pets safe.