A controversial statewide coyote killing contest saw a dramatic increase in animal deaths over the previous year — an outcome disappointing to critics of the contest.
The Georgia Coyote Challenge conducted by the state’s Department of Natural Resources encourages people to kill the animals from March to August for a chance to win a lifetime hunting license or similarly valued prize. This year, 215 hunters killed 431 coyotes.
During the 2017 challenge period, 83 hunters turned in a total of 195 coyotes. That’s a 121 percent increase.
Tina Johannsen, a DNR wildlife biologist, said the increase was “a function of the entry system.” Last year, submissions were made by presenting a carcass at a field office; this year, people could apply much more accessibly by using a photo and online entry form.
Coyotes had to be killed in…
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