View Full Version : Calling all predator hunters...
September 12, 2006, 07:17 PM
I am very very new to predator hunting. As of now I technically havn't even gone hunting! I have just scouted. I was wondering if any of you here own or have tried a FoxPro FX3 game caller? I live in southern Illinois and I know coyotes are harder to find here than out west. My best friend and I have permission to hunt on some reclaimed mine property that is infested with coyotes. I have seen many but it's always when I am going fishing (never when I have a gun):mad:! Do you guys think the call is worth the money ($400 without decoy and $500 with), or would you pot for someting else?
September 12, 2006, 09:07 PM
Don't know about that call, I still use a mouth call and an old Johnny Stewart call that takes cassettes and have had good success with both. Don't by the decoy, a turkey feather works well on the end of a piece of string attached to a stick, saves you $100. The best time to call coyotes is coming up fast, you will have pretty good luck calling in the young ones in late Sep thru Oct.
I think electronic calls are great, but don't go to hunt without a mouth call.
September 12, 2006, 09:11 PM
We use dying a rabbit mouth call and fishing line tied to a sage brush. Just shake it a little while calling and the coyotes will come. No trees where we hunt; a hunter can see for miles. We like to set up 90 degrees to each other for safe shooting and effective ambush.
My partner hunts with an old bolt action 12 gauge with the turn style choke set on improved modifed or full. Ammo is #2 goose loads. I hunt with a Savage heavy barreled .223 and 52 grain Sierra soft tips. I use a tripod or shooting sticks. My partner opens up when the "dogs" are nearly on top of him. The rest scatter and I pick them off while they're running away. Typically we nail 3 at time from a good a set.
Coyotes are soft skinned critters and easy to kill. I've toppled them with ordinary 22LR lead bullet ammo. But hit 'em in the chest from broadside to do the most damage. I've shot many with our 30-30 pick-up truck carbine. Even at distances beyond so-called 30-30 range, this old time cartidge will hit 'em hard and knock 'em off their feet.
Shoot as many coyotes as you can; they're tough on fawns and need killing.
September 12, 2006, 10:07 PM
A few more questions... this mine property we hunt on is pretty much vast stretches of open land with gobb piles (elevated piles of fill dirt) providing a good vantage point of the surrounding fields. Surrounding the mine property is woods on all sides. I have heard from a few people that I should set up about 75-80 yards into the woods and set a caller about 20 yards out of the woods and wait for one to sneak along the tree line. Would you advise this? I have scouted (gun in hand) in full camo behind some tall grass at the top of a gobb pile over looking a large field. I know I can't be seen because I have had more than one deer almost run over me. I have seen tracks and an obvious worn trail (maybe a perimeter trail for the coyotes) at the base of this hill. Which is a better spot? And where would set the caller if you chose the gobb pile?
September 12, 2006, 11:14 PM
Foxpro has an excellent reputation. Mouth calls are also quite effective; I use both electronic and mouth calls and if I had to give up one or the other, would keep the mouth calls; believe they are a bit more productive even though I get busted more often while using them than with the e.caller.
The Haydel's GHC (Government Hunter Cottontail) is an excellent closed reed call which also has a squeaker in one end (very useful in stopping a charging coyote for the shot and coaxing in one that has hung up). Closed reed cottontail or jackrabbit distress mouth calls are easy to use and quite inexpensive. Rodent squeakers are also quite effective, especially up close and personal.
You can set up an e.caller 75 yards or so crosswind or upwind of your position along with a decoy. As stated, the decoy can be a simple feather, just some movement to draw the coyote's attention so you can move to bring the gun to bear. A coyote will try to approach the call from downwind; with the above setup, hopefully he will not get downwind of you.
Coyotes have an uncanny ability to determing [B]the exact[B] location of the call and will come out of heavy cover really close to the call, making movement difficult to bring gun to bear on target undetected with the mouth calls.
The coyote has excellent hearing, smell and eyesight and uses all three against you. His nose is the hardest to defeat. Much easier to fool a deer than a coyote.
Choose your stands carefully,watch the wind! Take advantage of bushes/brush to break up your outline, use shadows and hunt with the sun to your back as much as possible. Coyotes catch movement at incredible distances; even the hand movement in using a mouth call can give you away.
An elevated stand is great if it provides sufficient cover in which to hide. Coyotes will often follow game trails, so give the piles a try, especially ones overlooking game trails, but be careful of your silhouette and try to get in a shadow to help you blend into the countryside.
Be forewarned, however, coyote hunting can be addictive!:)
September 12, 2006, 11:31 PM
awesome post. Very informative. I think I may actually give the call a try. If I do I will certainly let everyone know how it all worked out. Till then I'm sure I will come up with some more questions. One question I have is what is the best time of the day to scout? I would like to find tracks and scat and things but I don't want to scare anything off.
September 13, 2006, 12:53 AM
I tend to do any scouting mid-day; they'll know you are there, but doubt you will run them off. You do want to slip into your stands as quietly and unnoticed as possible, however.
You can find a wealth of info on predator hunting at the following URL:
September 13, 2006, 01:34 PM
I hunted coyotes quite a bit in the early 80s for the pelts, which were worth about $100 each at that time. Over the 3 years I hunted, I shot over 250 coyotes, skinned them, scraped them, and stretched them.
Back then, hi-tech was a tape caller with a long speaker cord. Worked OK, but moving it was a problem. Possibly the same with the Fox call. The smaller electronic ones might be better, and they are a heck of a lot cheaper.
My experience says
1- Buy a good mouth call and a squeaker. Coyotes can't resist a good squeaker. I prefer cottontail cries over jackrabbit squeals for the mouth call.
2- Learn about concealment and movement so they don't spot you getting into position. A coyote knows his territory like you know your living room.
3- Learn how to get into your shooting area before light, set up and don't start calling until about 45 mins or so before dawn. At daylight the coyotes get a lot spookier.
4- Set up facing into the wind with some sort of natural barrier behind you (creek, cliff, whatever), otherwise the coyotes will get behind you and bust you.
5- Don't call too much or too loud. Remember that a rabbit's lungs are about the size of your thumbs.
6- Although most of your shots will be close, you may have to pot the ones who hang up out at 100-200 yds, especially if they have been shot at before. My farthest shot was right at 400 yds, my closest literally at powder-burn range.
September 13, 2006, 08:09 PM
Have you ever thought about baiting them?
I think that the roadsides of Illinois could be a great source of road kill venison. Place it to the northwest (upwind) of some of your gob piles that you can access without being seen and sneak up and whack them. If they are not having dinner, use a howler and they will come a runnin'.
Shoot them all and skin when there is still body heat in the carcass, all predictions seem to point to a boom in the fur market. A good year and you can get your gas money and your Fox-Pro, too. For maximum profits, wait until they are prime in your area.
September 14, 2006, 12:00 PM
Good post, youp. Baiting might work, and the ones close to roads may not be as spooky.
I have never tried a howler or yelper to attract coyotes, but I have read that it works well to attract territorial coyotes.
If you are going to pelt them, wait until November for the best pelts, and read up on how to tube, scrape, and stretch pelts. Also, read up on poisoning the pelts to get rid of fleas and ticks. I used to dip them and it worked, but there may be other options now.
September 14, 2006, 12:44 PM
Have shot quite a few coyotes, helping rancher w/pred. control, but never bothered with pelts as S. Tx. coyotes don't usually have decent fur. I'm unfamiliar with the term "tube"??
read up on how to tube, scrape, and stretch pelts.
September 14, 2006, 01:38 PM
keep them coming please!:)
September 14, 2006, 07:20 PM
I have always carried a contractors grade trash can liner and a can of raid. Drop the coyote in, fill the sack with raid spray, tie it off and you are set.
September 14, 2006, 07:38 PM
Tubing the pelt means skinning without splitting the hide up the belly. You make a cut from one rear foot to the other, make a cut partway up the tail, pull the tail bone out of the tail hide leaving the tail intact and attached to the hide, then take the body out of the hide from the rear by turning the pelt inside out as you go. Comes out looking like a tube of skin with the only cut across the backs of the back legs (some furs are collected for the belly fur). Then you scrape the hide to remove any meat or fat. Sew up any bullet holes. At this point, some people rub borax into the skin to help dry it, or you can just dry it as is. Then you put the tubed pelt on a stretching frame to dry. The stretching frame is a wire frame that looks kind of bullet shaped. It keeps the pelt open so air can pass through it so it dries instead of rotting. Hang them from the ceiling for about 2-4 weeks (depending on humidity) and stack them.
The tip about Raid is OK (coyotes are COVERED with fleas and such), but most buyers don't want the pelts smelling like pesticides. Some people say it stains the fur. I never used it, I dipped the pelts in sheep dip.
September 14, 2006, 08:30 PM
Thanks for the explanation, Scorch.
Learn something every day, if I live long enough I might get smart...........nah, not enough time left for that.
I have heard of folks that shoot javelina and then put them in a garbage bag and wrapping open end of bag around truck exhaust for a few minutes to rid them of fleas. That wouldn't take care of any eggs, though.
September 15, 2006, 01:43 AM
I'm still trying to figure out how to get smart. I know a lot of trivial garbage, but haven't figured out how to turn it into a living yet.
September 15, 2006, 01:23 PM
Baiting will bring them in, alright. I would, however, check with your game warden/dept. before picking up a deer carcass. Might be just hunky dory, but might result in some charges such as untagged game animal or out of season possession?????
I personally have never had an unpleasant encounter with a game warden in Texas, but heard of one instance that, IMHO, an unwarranted citation was issued by a TP&W officer to a hunter who admitted to finishing off a deer with a .22 rimfire handgun after he had downed it with a center fire rifle. While it is unlawful to hunt deer with a rimfire in Tx., I know of many hunters who would think nothing of putting a downed animal out of its misery w/a .22 RF. I did not ever hear if the hunter was fined or not, however.
Any rate, a phone call could save you a bit of hassle.
September 18, 2006, 09:31 PM
I bought an FX3 last year. It was expensive, but I feel like I've gotten my money's worth. I got about 15 coyotes with it this summer, a couple last spring and winter, and hopefully will get a dozen or so more with it this fall. I've also had a fox and two bobcats respond. The fox was a first for me. I didn't shoot it because I didn't know we had foxes and had never seen one before.
I also used some fishing string and a turkey feather or two as a decoy.
It helps keep the coyotes attention away from me while I'm aiming.
For night hunting, I still use mouth calls.
September 29, 2006, 11:52 PM
I bought a $10 mouth call and had a guy show me how to use it, i get at least one coyote to come in every time i go out with it.
You could buy one heck of a mouth call and a good video to show you how its done and still have enough left over for a big ol box of ammo.
September 30, 2006, 03:15 AM
I have an older Foxpro, the 532B. It’s a good caller, and quite a few critters have come into it. Some animals respond that you wouldn’t expect. I was playing squirrel distress one time and a doe came walking right up to the caller to check it out. The 532B is plenty loud enough for distress calls, but I think it could use more volume for the howls. I’m pretty sure the FX3 is louder than the 532B. Foxpro is now taking pre-orders for the new FX5. I believe it’s selling for $750.
For more volume I just bought a Minaska Bandit Big Country. Minaska Outdoors is Foxpro’s biggest competitor. Minaska’s base caller is the Bandit. I bought the Big Country Bandit which is the same as a regular Bandit, but in addition to the cone speaker it has a 10W horn speaker. You can play one speaker or the other or both at the same time. It comes with 100 sounds and Minaska offers any new sounds they come out with for free to Bandit owners. It stores the sounds on a removable compact flash card. This makes it easy to replace the sounds or just swap the card with another with a whole new set of sounds. Bandits go for about $500. The Big Country Bandit was $550.
September 30, 2006, 11:41 AM
I was in Wal Mart the other day and ran across a electronic call for 39.00. I forget the brand name. It didn't seem to have alot of volume but was on a remote. I believed they claimed the remote would work from 75 yds away. For 39.00 or so I may give it a whirl. Varmit Al's also has a recipie for a el-cheapo caller. Those Foxpro callers are just too far out of my budget.
September 30, 2006, 03:23 PM
I bought one, but haven't tried it yet. It's $32 at Walmart. A few guys at Predator Masters Forums said they've had some luck with it. It's good in the thicker areas.
September 30, 2006, 04:14 PM
dying cotton tail rabbit tape and tape player with a rabbit pelt set up with fishing line to make it move. Have everything setup about 100 yards out and wait for them to come running in. The yotes around here are full of mange the last few years so the hides are out of the question.
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