Utah's Predator Control Program FAQ
Learn more about the program, how it works and how you can participate.
How does the Predator Control Program work?
The DWR has a predator-control program that provides incentives for members of the public to remove coyotes. Participants in this program will receive up to $50 for each properly documented coyote that they kill in Utah. For details, see the rest of this page and our predator control program map — 382 KB PDF.
How do I register for the program?
To register and receive compensation for coyote removal, you must follow the program rules and guidelines. Specifically, you must:
- Complete the online training and registration course.
- Submit the coyote's lower jaw and either the full pelt or the scalp (with both ears attached). Also submit the properly filled out compensation form, which must include the GPS location where the coyote was taken, the identity of the person who took it and the date of removal.
- Request compensation only at designated sites and on designated days and times. The DWR marks coyote ears to prevent double payments. Program participants are responsible for disposing of carcasses.
- Follow all of the rules and regulations related to trapping and firearm use, as detailed in the Utah Furbearer Guidebook and the Predator Control Incentives rule (R657-64), Utah Code and local law.
What program changes went into effect on August 7, 2018?
In May 2018, the Utah Wildlife Board passed several rule amendments to the Predator Control Program. (View the R657-64: Predator Control Incentives rule).
These changes went into effect on August 7, 2018. Here is a summary of the changes:
- All participants must recertify each year. This means that you are required to take the online training course once every 365 days. When you complete the course, we will issue you a COR (Certificate of Registration) that will be valid for one year.
- You must submit all coyotes within one year of the kill date. Coyotes must be in a condition that makes it easy to identify them as coyotes. They must be free of maggots, other carrion organisms and any rot.
- Participants may only claim payments for their own coyotes. Only the individual who has killed a coyote can claim payment for that coyote.
- Program participants are required to report their kills on an electronic application. This application will replace the paper compensation forms that are currently used. The free application will be available for iOS and Android smartphones. You can use paper forms or the app to submit claims from now until June 30, 2019. Starting July 1, 2019, you must use the app to submit coyotes for compensation. We will no longer accept paper compensation forms after this date. The app will not replace the requirement to check in the scalp and lower jaw at a designated check-in station. We will still offer check-ins across the state throughout each month. More information about the Utah Coyote Bounty Reporter smartphone application is available under Utah Bounty Reporter smartphone app.
- In order to submit a claim using the smartphone application, you must have location data turned on. Utah Code 63G-2-305 protects any location data that you submit from public disclosure.
- If the Coyote Bounty Program pays the total annual appropriated budget during any fiscal year, per coyote compensation will decrease by $5.00 during the following fiscal year. If the program has a surplus in the annual budget at the end of any fiscal year, payments will increase by $5.00 the next year, up to a maximum $50 per coyote. Essentially, the budget may fluctuate in $5.00 increments based on the previous year's expenditure.
All of the other program requirements will remain in effect. You must also follow these requirements in order to participate in the program.
When and where do I check in coyotes?
Every month, the DWR updates the list of coyote check-in locations and times. When you visit a check-in site, you must bring proof that you completed the registration and training course and a filled out compensation form or have previously submitted coyotes through the Utah Coyote Bounty Reporter smartphone app with location data turned on.
When will the Utah Coyote Bounty Reporter smartphone app be required and how do I use it?
Utah Coyote Bounty Reporter smartphone application will be available sometime before June 30, 2019. Beginning July 1, you must use the app to submit coyotes for compensation. The app will not remove the requirement to check in the scalp and lower jaw at a designated check-in station. Learn how to use the smartphone app.
You can use paper compensation forms or the app to submit claims from now until June 30, 2019. We will no longer accept paper compensation forms beginning July 1, 2019.
How should I store coyotes before I bring them in for reimbursement?
The DWR requires all hunters to use one of the following storage methods:
- Place the scalp or pelt (with both ears attached) and the lower jaw (at least the front two-thirds of the jaw) into a paper bag so they can dry out. On the outside of the bag, please label it with the corresponding number recorded on the compensation form, or in the order submitted through the Coyote Bounty Reporter smartphone app.
- Storage in a freezer is also acceptable, but the jaw and scalp must have sufficiently thawed so that the DWR can notch the ears and remove a tooth at the reimbursement location. Before you freeze an entire head, place something in the mouth to prop the jaws completely open.
IMPORTANT: We may reject frozen samples that we cannot process. Proper disposal of carcasses is the hunter's responsibility.
Can I use spotlights to hunt coyotes at night?
Individual counties regulate spotlighting for coyotes and other nonprotected species in Utah. To find out if spotlighting is allowed, contact the sheriff's department in the county where you wish to hunt.
Why is location important in removal efforts?
The recommended coyote removal zone is based on the boundaries of areas that are important to deer. Coyotes primarily kill fawns and can produce more than six pups per year. They have high reproductive potential and can be difficult to hunt. It will be impossible to remove all coyotes from Utah, even with a large effort by the public. Although any coyote taken in Utah can be submitted for compensation, the DWR is recommending specific areas and dates when coyote removal has the greatest potential for benefiting mule deer.
Download the statewide predator control program map (382 KB PDF) that identifies the areas where you should target your control efforts to provide the most benefit to mule deer.
Why is timing important in removal efforts?
The recommended removal dates are December through June. Because coyotes mate during the winter — usually in January and February — the most effective control efforts will remove coyotes after form pair bonds and set territories, but before they raise pups. Coyote removal is less effective in late summer. That is when coyotes typically wander and disperse, and often die of natural causes in an attempt to find new territory. These recommended dates are also before the deer fawning season. It is during these periods that deer populations are most susceptible to coyote predation. For the greatest benefit to mule deer, program participants should remove coyotes in the recommended locations and during the recommended season.
How will the Predator Control Program benefit mule deer?
The severity of weather and the amount of forage available are usually the most important factors that limit deer numbers. If the weather is mild and the habitat is good, then removing predators could increase the number of fawns that survive. More fawns could help to stimulate an increase in mule deer numbers. If there is not enough good habitat or there is a harsh winter, then fawns may die from other causes besides coyotes, and predator removal won't help deer populations to grow.
How will the DWR evaluate the effectiveness of this program?
The DWR will assess the program to determine if the money spent compensating for coyote removal has resulted in lower coyote numbers, improved fawn-to-doe ratios and higher numbers of mule deer. The DWR will track the locations where coyotes are being effectively removed and identify areas where additional removal is necessary.
Will the DWR protect my privacy?
Utah has privacy-protection laws that the DWR will follow while implementing this program.
What happens if the program's funding runs out?
The DWR expects to have enough funding to provide reimbursement for all coyotes. A finite amount of money, however, has been appropriated. If reimbursements deplete all of the funds, the program will be suspended until the DWR finds an alternative funding source or the next fiscal year. (State of Utah fiscal years begin on July 1.) The DWR will post notices online if the program has to be suspended for any reason. Additionally, the next fiscal year's payments will be reduced by $5 per coyote if the appropriated funding was exhausted in the preceding fiscal year.
How can I learn more about this program?
What legislation created this program?
The Utah Legislature passed two predator-related bills in 2012. The first bill, Predator Control Funding (Senate Bill 87), added a $5 fee to all Utah big game hunting permits. The money funds a program to control populations of predatory animals that endanger the health of Utah's non-predatory wildlife.
The second bill, Mule Deer Protection Act (Senate Bill 245), allocated general funding to the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources ($500,000) and the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food ($250,000). The legislation directed our agencies to work together — and with other government entities — to administer programs that reduce and control coyote populations, particularly in areas where predation of mule deer occurs.
How long can I keep my coyotes (scalp and jaw) before submitting?
Participants must submit coyotes at a designated check-in site within one year from the date they are removed. This amendment became effective August 7, 2018. To effectively assess the program, the DWR must receive coyotes in a timely manner.