What Do Coyotes Eat? (More Than Just Cats)

The National Park Service has noted that 75% of an urban coyote’s diet is from human sources, which include fruit trees, garbage and composting, pet foods and urban pets. By contrast, coyotes in more natural areas consume only 36% human food sources–less than half of their urban counterparts.

What are coyotes eating in my neighborhood?
Mostly, fruit that has fallen in your yard, your pet’s food, and trash from bins that might not be securely fastened. Coyotes are generalists: they can diversify their diet to survive on whatever is available.

What can I do to help?

Pick up all fruit from the ground in your front and back yards
Feed your pets indoors only
Secure all trash bins
Cover all composting piles
Do not leave your pets outside at night without proper supervision

Concerned about your yard’s coyote risk? Scientists at Loyola Marymount University, who are working with the City of Culver City, have developed a backyard risk assessment that will provide you with a risk score. If you are interested in participating in this study or would like to learn more about coyote studies happening in your neighborhood, please contact Dr. Melinda Weaver at [email protected].

Please visit the City’s website for more information about the City’s Coyote Management Plan and tips

Editor’s Note- If you have fruit trees that produce more than you use, Westside Food Bank is always happy to have fresh fruit to give to their clients. Simply collect the fruit from your tree and bring it to the Food Bank Monday through Friday between 11am-5pm. If you need help picking or transporting your fruit, call Food Forward at 818-530-4125 or visit them online at FoodForward.org.

The Actors' Gang


  1. I’m sure I was looking for a useable picture of coyote eating; you are the first reader to catch this. To my (not very wildlife trained) eye, that’s a really big fox.
    Thanks for pointing out the error – we will correct.

  2. When and if a coyote catches a cat, does it consume all of the cat, or does it just eat the insides, and leave the head, feet and tail?

  3. Do you know if it’s the size of the coyote, or is it how hungry it is. Would a Racoon be likely to eat just the insides of a cat? Trying to find out if it waa a coyote or a Racoon that killed my cat? Thanks for any advise, June

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