coyote

noun
coy·​ote | \ kī-ˈō-tē How to pronounce coyote (audio) , chiefly Western ˈkī-ˌōt How to pronounce coyote (audio) \
plural coyotes or coyote

Definition of coyote

1 : a buff-gray to reddish-gray swift carnivorous mammal (Canis latrans) of North America that is closely related to but smaller than the wolf, has a narrow pointed muzzle and triangular ears, hunts singly or in small groups, and is known for its various distinctive vocalizations (such as barks, yips, and howls)

Note: The coyote is often considered a threat to livestock. Despite being hunted and trapped, the coyote has expanded its original range and is found in all states except Hawaii.

2 slang : one who smuggles immigrants into the U.S.

Illustration of coyote

Illustration of coyote

coyote 1

Examples of coyote in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Birds, deer and coyotes are among the animals killed in the incidents. USA TODAY, "Eel-powered tree, skateboard safety, red light on herring: News from around our 50 states," 5 Dec. 2019 The ground there was marked by coyote, deer and even squirrel tracks, more proof of success. Jennifer Oldham, The Know, "Retrofitting busy highways, like U.S. Highway 285 in Colorado, to let wildlife travel safely, too," 14 Oct. 2019 The ground there was marked by coyote, deer and even squirrel tracks, more proof of success. Jennifer Oldham, Anchorage Daily News, "Retrofitting busy highways to let wildlife travel safely, too," 13 Oct. 2019 The ground there was marked by coyote, deer and even squirrel tracks, more proof of success. Jennifer Oldham, Washington Post, "Retrofitting busy highways to let wildlife travel safely, too," 11 Oct. 2019 People pay according to how far the coyotes take them, and in what manner. Justin Rohrlich, Quartz, "This is how much it costs to be smuggled over the US border," 10 June 2019 The predators most vulnerable to death from secondary poisoning are coyotes, foxes, raccoons, skunks and birds of prey, says Stella McMillin, a scientist at California’s Department of Fish and Wildlife who supports the bill. The Economist, "A Californian bill would make it harder to control the state’s thriving rats," 21 Nov. 2019 Viktor Usov had assumed that his feline, Sasha, had been devoured by coyotes when the cat disappeared in 2014, just several months after Usov adopted him, NBC affiliate KGW in Portland reported. NBC News, "His cat went missing 5 years ago in Oregon. He was found in New Mexico.," 21 Nov. 2019 Turkey predators include hawks, coyotes, foxes and wolves, as well as raccoons and opossums, which like to eat turkey eggs and chicks (called poults). Jason Bittel, Washington Post, "Turkeys are much more than the main attraction at Thanksgiving," 17 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'coyote.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of coyote

1759, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for coyote

Mexican Spanish, from Nahuatl coyōtl

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Time Traveler for coyote

Time Traveler

The first known use of coyote was in 1759

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Statistics for coyote

Last Updated

5 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Coyote.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/coyote. Accessed 17 January 2020.

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More Definitions for coyote

coyote

noun
How to pronounce coyote (audio) How to pronounce coyote (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of coyote

: a small wild animal that is related to dogs and wolves and that lives in North America

coyote

noun
coy·​ote | \ kī-ˈō-tē How to pronounce coyote (audio) , ˈkī-ˌōt \

Kids Definition of coyote

: a yellowish to reddish gray doglike animal chiefly of western North America that is closely related to but smaller than the wolf

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More from Merriam-Webster on coyote

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with coyote

Spanish Central: Translation of coyote

Nglish: Translation of coyote for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of coyote for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about coyote

Comments on coyote

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