Predator Hunting Q&A

Predator hunting is one of the fastest growing segments of the hunting market.  I recently had a chance to talk with Al Morris, a champion coyote caller and member of the Hunter’s Specialties Pro Staff, about some predator hunting basics.

 Q:  “Al, many of us are just getting into predator hunting.  What are some basic tips to help someone be successful?”

A:  “I know it sounds cliché, but you need to hunt where predators live.  Scouting is king in my world.  If I see coyote or bobcat sign in an area while I am hunting other game, I make a point to log it in so I can return to these places later.  Tracks and scat help you see where the animals are concentrated.  Coyotes will serenade you at night, as well, giving away their general location.”

Q:  “Once a hunter locates a good spot, then what?”

A:  “Proper set up is important.  You need to learn to find spots that make it easy for a predator to approach your position without seeing or smelling you.  In a perfect world, the sun would be at your back and the wind in your face, but you will seldom find those conditions.  Use the terrain to your advantage and remember predators will usually always try to approach from down wind.  If possible, try to have a shooting lane down wind.  I like to use Hunter’s Specialties Scent-A-Way products to minimize my human scent.  This often gives me closer shots because even though they are down wind, they don’t smell me.”

Q:  “I’m a little intimidated about starting to call predators.  How hard are the different calls to master?”

A:  “The easiest calls to use are, of course, the electronic ones.  The Johnny Stewart Attractor and PreyMaster Callers are durable and affordable and feature the authentic Johnny Stewart sounds, which I consider some of the best available.  It is always good to learn to blow a mouth call as well.  Don’t get too hung up on technique, because everyone is a little different in the way they call.  Just learn to put plenty of emotion into the calling series.  Remember, you are trying to re-create the sound of an animal in distress.”

Q:  “What other equipment is necessary?”

A:  “I usually recommend first-time predator hunters get a good caller.  After that, it is decent camo, something to sit on, and your favorite deer rifle or turkey gun.  You may want to get a rifle more suited to predators later on, but start out with a minimum of equipment until you decide to get more serious.”

Q:  “Anything else you would like to add?”

A:  “Learn to hunt ‘outside the box’.  Scout in areas where others don’t.  Sometimes a hunter that avoids the wide open areas where most people go will find success in thicker cover using a shotgun.  Don’t be afraid to try different sounds.  If predators have heard plenty of dying rabbit calls in your area, use a bird or fawn distress to get their interest.”

Q:  “Thanks, Al.  Where can people go to learn more about Hunter’s Specialties products?”

A:  “They can visit our website at, or call toll free at 1-800-728-0321.”

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