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DISCLAIMER: While we have gone to great lengths to ensure accuracy, this information is to be used as a guide only. assumes no responsibility if legislation that effects hunting in an area has changed. Please refer to your local authority for updated rules and regulations. We will do our best to provide contact information in the article below.

So, what are the laws for hunting coyotes in California?

laws for hunting coyotes in CaliforniaThis is a great question. It’s really important to have a good understanding of what is allowed or not before you venture out on your hunt next season. It’s always good to keep yourself updated with new or changes to existing laws within the state.

Coyotes (Latin name Canis Latrans) are native to the South Western region of the United States.

In appearance, a coyote looks like a combination of a wolf and a dog.

In the last few centuries, the population of coyotes has increased rapidly through North America.

Though they were worshiped by the native tribes of America, they are considered pests since they attack small children, pets, and livestock.

Hence government agencies have tried to reduce the population of coyotes to the extent possible.

At present, thousands of coyotes die due to disease, accidents, and hunting. There are approximately 500,000 coyotes in California at present

Who Manages Coyote Hunting in Caliofornia?

In addition to farmers whose livestock is attacked by the coyotes, families, and hunters are often interested in hunting coyotes, especially if they lose pets or cattle to the coyotes. They would like to find out the coyote hunting laws in California, whether hunting a coyote is legally allowed in the state, and if there are restrictions on hunting the coyote.

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife regulates coyote hunting in the state and specifies the guidelines that coyote hunters must follow at their website .

Coyotes are considered non-game mammals like most types of rats, mice, rodents, skunks, and possums.

Is coyote hunting legal in California?

In California, the use of silencers while hunting is prohibited1. The ammunition used for hunting, including bullets, slugs, shots, and pellets, must be non-lead, as California has enacted a 100 percent lead ammunition ban to protect wildlife from lead poisoning23.

The use of lights for hunting coyotes may be subject to certain restrictions. However, these restrictions can be waived if the coyotes are causing damage to farmers or property owners by killing their livestock or other animals.

While there is generally no limit on the number of coyotes that a hunter can kill, depredation permits issued to landowners or tenants suffering damage from coyotes may specify the number and species of animals that may be taken7.

It’s important to note that hunting from a moving vehicle is illegal in California. For more detailed information, please refer to the official California Department of Fish and Wildlife website.

Do you need a hunting license to hunt coyotes in California?

A hunting license is required to hunt coyotes in California and more information is available at

Is there a bounty on coyotes in California?

At present no bounty is offered by the government on hunting coyotes, though some large livestock farmers may offer rewards to hunters getting rid of coyotes.


  1. I will admit I need some help
    There is a lot of random information out there that barley helps and alot of misguided information that just don’t seem right ..
    And I will admit I am starting to get into coyote hunting as a hobby
    I understand the how to
    Lead free ammo in California
    No bag limit because coyotes are considered vermin
    You can hunt coyote 365 days a year .. yay ..

    But the misguided info starts with
    ? What do you do with the carcass ?

    I’ve read up and down just throw it in a ditch and use it as bait the next day you hunt

    Throw it in a ditch and Barry it “4 feet deep preferable”. Or just a few inches so you can collect the skull next year

    Take the carcass to the dump only

    Throw the carcass in a trash bag and throw it away at home trash can

    Maybe if you get Lucky you can call a taxidermist and sell it for 10$

    And then there’s ranchers just hang them from a tree or fence and it’s good to go

    Or that weird news article that said some guy just piled 20 coyotes in the back ally-wooded area and he was thumbs up good to go just neighbors were startled

    I just really want to know what’s the right thing to do
    What’s legal and not
    Is it sportsman like to take it to the dump
    But just bad manners to throw it in a ditch

    Thank you
    God bless 🦅🇺🇸
    – William

    • Hi William, Thanks so much for your comment. I would like to refer you to the officials on this one. here is an excerpt from their website:

      Proper disposal of the carcass (incineration, burying, etc.) is critical to prevent exposure of other wildlife and humans to disease. Three common effective methods of carcass disposal are: incineration, burying, and rendering. Incineration is the preferred method to use when the carcass is diseased; however, it can also be the most expensive. An acceptable alternative is to bury the carcass. The carcass should be buried at least 4 feet deep and covered with lime to discourage scavengers from uncovering and consuming it.

      That can be found at and also outlines some other recommendations and about how to handle a coyote carcass – specifically in the state of California.

      I have also referred your question to each of the different regions to see if there is any difference between them. Thanks again for your question, I will update this thread as I know more – feel free to add any follow up questions. I do hope that helps,

      Thanks William.


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