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Hunting at night is fun and exciting. The dark is full of unforetold mysteries, and you’re never quite sure what will come creeping out of the brush. Any seasoned hunter will tell you that night lights are vital for enhancing visibility, especially when going after nocturnal prey. Which raises the question: Red or green light for coyote hunting?
Coyotes are best hunted using red-colored lights. This is due to their inability to tell a lot of colors apart. They can only see blue and yellow hues. Moreover, red lights do not fatigue the hunter’s eyes, facilitating long-term use.
I remember the first time I went calling for coyotes. It began during the day and extended into the night. My buddy insisted I bring along 200 watts of red coyote light. I was confused at first as I always thought white light provided better illumination. A few hours after dusk, I understood why. Read on if you’re in the same boat, wondering why you need red instead of green or white hunting lights.
Which Colors Can Coyotes Not See?
According to various studies, while humans see the world in a wide range of colors, coyotes have dichromatic vision (same as hogs and deer). They only see the yellows and blues on the color spectrum.
So steer clear of yellow-colored hunting gear and don’t wear blue denim jeans. If it’s one of those nights where the moon shines bright, the coyotes will make you out and avoid you like the plague.
These animals are also near-sighted. They have 20/70 vision, meaning what you see at 70 feet away; they will see at 20 feet away. Further than this, the object becomes indiscernible. On the contrary, they have phenomenal peripheral vision, which makes it damn near impossible to sneak up on these feral canines.
When you use bright lights, you risk spooking them, which beats the whole purpose of hunting. This is why people began using colored lights like red and green. Because coyotes can only see blue and yellow hues, they cannot detect colored lights. So, should you choose red or green light for coyote hunting?
Which is Best: Red Or Green Light For Coyote Hunting?
When choosing between red and green lights for hunting coyotes, you must first understand the role the lights play. We use colored light for night hunting due to several reasons, mainly:
- Illumination. You want to have just the right amount of light while maintaining stealth.
- Frequency. Green and red lights fall low on the electromagnetic spectrum. They make it easier to see in the dark while avoiding detection.
Green Hunting Light
Most hunters claim that you may as well use green lights because they are also undetectable to coyotes. However, some sources say that shining a green light on one will make it either dash away or lurk around. It’s often used for hunting hogs at night.
Red Hunting Lights
These vicious canines cannot see red, making it one of the best light colors for hunting coyotes. It is the best choice because it does not cause eye fatigue and offers excellent visibility while maintaining cover.
How to Attract Coyotes
Although it’s very rare to find a stationary coyote, it is not unheard of for landowners to find one lying down. However, this only happens if a pack has grown accustomed enough to the property that they’re comfortable.
Baiting coyotes entails enticing and tempting them to a specific location with lures such as food. One common misconception is that baits can only be used during the day. Coyotes are opportunistic feeders, meaning they will hunt for food whenever the opportunity arises – night or day. This means that baits are just as effective for night-hunting coyotes.
Because they are predatory species, you must be very involved in their baiting; otherwise, they may prefer to hunt for their own food. According to some experts, the best coyote bait is a deer carcass. The smell of a dead animal will entice them.
Consider placing your bait out in the open. Coyotes have a keen sense of smell and can detect a carcass from up to 350 yards away.
Using a Caller
There are commercially-available callers in hunting stores. They are either electronically or manually operated. You can also turn your hands into a wind instrument to make open or closed reed calls. This, however, requires tons of practice to get right.
Check out our article on Coyote Calling: A Complete Beginner’s Guide
Tips For Hunting Coyotes With Lights
When choosing the best red light for coyote hunting to buy, consider your hunting style. Are you going after them or baiting them? All the same, opt for one with features such as:
- Adjustable light intensity.
- Mounting versatility, especially if using hunting vehicles.
- Non-reflective housing.
When you spot a pair of bright eyes (they seem to glow fiery white) in the dark, use the outer perimeter of your beam to track the animal. Keep the light on the animal until it can be positively identified. If you make a hasty shot, you may hit non-target animals such as foxes, deer, and raccoons, which produce eyeshine very much like the targeted coyotes.
You must be as quiet as possible, whether you are hiding behind a blind or perched on top of a tree stand. As far as a coyote’s hearing ability is concerned, it is good. Very good. Their ear shape captures even the slightest movement. A coyote is said to hear a mouse moving beneath 7 inches of snow!
You can try the “kiss of death” to improve shot placement. A loud kissing sound makes them momentarily stop in their tracks, facilitating a one-shot kill.
When you have to decide between red or green light for coyote hunting, opt for the red kind. They offer great visibility without spooking the coyotes. Nothing beats the rush of adrenaline you get when a coyote stares you down long enough for you to find him in the scope and end the encounter with a loud report!
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36 years old, been hunting and fishing my entire life – love the outdoors, family, and all kinds of hunting and fishing! I have spent thousands of hours hunting hogs and training hunting dogs, but I’m always learning new stuff and really happy to be sharing them with you! hit me up with an email in the contact form if you have any questions.