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Are mini donkeys in danger of coyotes?

Discussion in 'Everything Else Horses, Mules & Donkeys' started by Ellie May, Jun 24, 2018.

  1. Jun 24, 2018
    Ellie May

    Ellie May Chillin' with the herd

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    I am NOT talking about using minis as livestock guardians, just want to make that clear right off the bat. My minis have lived outside amongst coyotes for years, and I never have worried about it but am hearing that lots of people wouldn't dream of leaving theirs unprotected at night. Does anyone have any FIRSTHAND knowledge of coyotes attacking minis, not looking for opinions, just empirical knowledge.
     
  2. Jun 24, 2018
    Mini Horses

    Mini Horses True BYH Addict

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    My herd -- years back! -- were EXTREMLY protective of their young when it came to predators. Fox were not allowed in the fields, or dogs. Now they tolerated my own dogs but others were in danger. It was more or less obvious between individual animals -- some less bothered, especially if the intruder was just walking thru the field and out. Some actually chased and attacked.

    If there is a pack of coyote, and they are hunting, then there may be more issue. It needs to be looked at in more depth as to the situations where you live...what's available for them to hunt, numbers in area, etc.

    I never lost a foal or a goat kid. Donkeys CAN BE violent in an attack. It has always been heard that if a donkey kicked and "missed" it was because they did NOT want to hit the mark. Having seen an attack, resultant dead animal after, I can say if one goes after a predator, they are serious! They bite, stomp, kick, heavy attackers. A pack can be a different outcome depending on number of predators & donkeys.

    Mine were minis.
     
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  3. Jun 24, 2018
    Ellie May

    Ellie May Chillin' with the herd

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    I only have 2, a middle aged pair, and they are pretty easy going. They have lived their entire lives (with previous owners, and now me) out and unprotected against coyotes. The coyotes live in a draw not far from me and i see them pass by constantly, and they will get any chicken that didn't "come home to roost". I wonder if because my coyotes are "suburban" and probably eat lots of rabbits, lizards, cats (!) etc donkeys are too "big game"...? I can't understand why it seems the majority of mini donk owners insist mini donks will get eaten by coyotes and mine have lived a collective 30 years unharmed...?
     
  4. Jun 24, 2018
    Bunnylady

    Bunnylady True BYH Addict

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    I've heard it said that it comes down to the hunting strategy of the predator. One miniature horse or donkey is most likely more than a match for a single dog or coyote, but when faced with a pack using pack tactics, things can be very different. On other forums, I have seen posts about miniature horses or donkeys that got attacked by dogs or coyotes (which included some pretty graphic pictures), but as I recall, they involved more than one predator. Predators are generally smart enough to weigh the risks against the rewards, and unless they habitually hunt in a group, they most likely will pass up larger prey. Even dogs, which are usually hunting for entertainment rather than survival, are more likely to simply harrass rather than attack when working alone (unless the prey runs, in which case, the urge to chase may overcome caution. But since donkeys are more likely to stand and fight rather than run, they are less at risk for this than, say, sheep).
     
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  5. Jun 24, 2018
    Ellie May

    Ellie May Chillin' with the herd

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    Thank you for your thoughtful answer. It does seem like our coyotes are either single, or pairs, or small family units, rarely see or hear evidence of a "pack", so maybe that's what it boils down to and/or "luck" ?? I would have to think, though, if my donkeys were being harassed or showed evidence of having been in fear for their lives at night, I would notice...all they ever tell me in the AM is "Where's breakfast?!"
     
  6. Jun 24, 2018
    Donna R. Raybon

    Donna R. Raybon Loving the herd life

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    Here coyotes take anything 65# or less. I know of many cases they take cow/calf when cow gives birth. TWRA has video of several coyotes taking a pair of Cubs from momma black bear.
    When I lived in Colorado coyotes were like souped up fox and rarely ever saw more than one at a time. I did not feel the least bit intimidated. What we have here in the female is 45 to 60# and males over 75#. No exaggeration these were actual weighed by my self or friends. They run in packs when you see them out hunting, too. They make the hair stand up on back of my neck, like I am a 'menu consideration!' Just heard on local news TWRA confirmed cougar sightings, too. Not to mention the wolfdog hybrids that are trendy pet of the moment. Just local I know of two intact females that dug out and disappeared.
     
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  7. Jun 24, 2018
    greybeard

    greybeard Herd Master Golden Herd Member

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    In many years, I've lost only 1 calf to coyotes, and I'm not real sure it wasn't already dead when the coyotes found it. I don't look at all the cows and calves every day.
    I've shot a lot of them over the decades, but in recent years, actually seeing a coyote is a rarity. Like all canines, they are smart and they learn.
    They normally do a big 360 around my place and those of my neighbors.
    Those that never learned to do the 360 and instead cross a fence out of the Nat Forest on to my place get to do the .270 dance..my neighbors use smaller calibers..them 'evil black rifles'.
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2018
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  8. Jun 28, 2018
    Ridgetop

    Ridgetop True BYH Addict

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    If your mini donkeys have been living unmolested outside for years, they are probably safe. Unless there is a major change in predator numbers or species they will go on happily.