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Individual study: Effects of large-scale removal of coyotes on pronghorn and mule deer productivity and abundance

Published source details

Brown D.E. & Conover M.R. (2011) Effects of large-scale removal of coyotes on pronghorn and mule deer productivity and abundance. The Journal of Wildlife Management, 75, 876-882


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Remove or control predators Terrestrial Mammal Conservation

A replicated, paired sites, controlled, before-and-after study in 2007–2008 in 12 rangeland sites in Wyoming and Utah, USA (Brown and Conover 2011) found that after coyotes Canis latrans were removed, pronghorn Antilocapra americana abundance was higher and productivity declined less in removal than non-removal sites, but for mule deer Odocoileus hemionus abundance and productivity did not differ. After eight months of coyote control, the abundance of pronghorn was higher and decline in productivity smaller in removal (abundance: 4.4 pronghorn/km2; change in productivity: –6.5 fawns/100 adult females) than in non-removal sites (abundance: 2.5 pronghorn/km2; change in productivity: –22 fawns/100 adult females). However, mule deer abundance and productivity did not differ between removal (abundance: 3.5 mule deer/km2; productivity: 56 fawns/100 adult females) and non-removal sites (abundance: 4.9 mule deer/km2; productivity: 62 fawns/100 adult females). Six pairs of sites in similar habitat were selected. Site areas totalled 10,517 km2. Between late July 2007 and March 2008, an average of 195 coyotes/1,000 km2 were removed from one site in each pair by trapping and shooting. Pronghorn and mule deer were counted by driving 17–27 km-long transects at 25 km/hr weekly during July and August and fortnightly in September, in 2007 and 2008.

(Summarised by Ricardo Rocha)