Coyote is the official state animal of South Dakota. Coyote was entitled as the official South Dakota state animal on March 5, 1949. Canis latrans is the scientific name of Coyote. It is commonly known as Elk or Wapiti, which is native to the United States and all of southern and south-central Canada, south through Mexico into northern Central America.
The law designating the coyote as the official state animal of South Dakota is found in the South Dakota Codified Laws, title 1, chapter 1-6, section 1-6-8.
State animal of South Dakota Facts–
- Common name: Coyote
- Scientific name: Canis latrans.
- Habitat: Mainly in deserts, grasslands, and forests but they can adapt anywhere.
- Diet: Squirrels, rabbits, birds, poultry, livestock, rodents, insects, carrion, garbage, pronghorn antelope, deer, and mountain sheep.
- Weight: Characteristically weigh between 15 to 25 pounds
- Average Size: about 35 inches long, with another 16 inches for the tail.
- Color: Grayish- brown in color with white fur under its neck and belly.
- Average life span: In captivity between 10 and 14 years
- Breeding season: They mate in between February to April.
- Pups: The babies of the Coyotes called ‘Pups’. The female elk give birth to single calves after sixty days of the gestation period.
- Major strength: Excellent vision and a great sense of smell.
South Dakota’s State animal Coyotes have one mate their whole life that called monogamously. They rarely build their own dens; usually, take over an abandoned one. The coyote has few natural predators, which include bears, mountain lions, and wolves. It is very good swimmers. At night Coyotes make the sound to communicate with their family members or pack to keep track of them.
Coyotes are extraordinarily intelligent, have exceptional vision and sense of smell, and can attain a speed of 40 mph. The Coyotes, South Dakota’s State animal is the most popular and elegant official state animal, which outstandingly represents and glorifies the spirit of South Dakota State.