Many people have heard odd noises in the night. Some think they hear a human cry or scream. But often it’s the call of a coyote! Learn if these clever canines can mimic human voices.
Wide Range of Vocalizations
Coyotes make a variety of yips, barks, howls and other noises. This helps them communicate across long distances. Their vocal cords allow them to make very diverse sounds. From high-pitched yelping to lower pitch howling, their range can seem almost human at times.
When coyotes reach a crescendo in their group howl, it can sound eerily like a human scream. What we perceive as singing is them contacting each other. But their harmonizing voices certainly can resemble people hollering!
Coyotes will also change the pitch of their howls and tone. Dominant pack members use lower pitched bellows. Submissive ones make higher squeaking yelps and whines mixed into the pack vocalization. This pitch variation again mimics expressions a human might make.
So while coyotes aren’t actually trying to copy humans, their expansive vocal abilities combined with group harmonizing can strangely resemble two-legged creatures at times! That late night serenade is likely just your local coyote choir.