Best Light To Use Night Coyote Hunting: [Pro Tips]

Best Light To Use Night Coyote Hunting

Coyotes are becoming more and more of a problem throughout certain parts of the world. This is especially true in residential areas. Due to heightened construction, these creatures are being forced out of their homes and hunting grounds.

They eventually make their way to residential areas where people are either unknowingly feeding them or they are taking advantage of gardens and small, helpless prey. And, once they find a suitable food source they will only continue to come back. Luckily, these creatures are huntable.

In fact, many do hunt them for sport, but if you want to be successful at such a task, you’ll likely need to do it at night.

Coyotes are nocturnal creatures, meaning they are the most active at night. This is when they prefer to be out. However, it is entirely possible to lure and kill a coyote during the day with the right techniques.

It is much harder, but possible. The night is always your best option because they’ll not only be more active during this period, but they’ll also be more vocal.

This being said, you might be surprised to learn that hunting coyotes with artificial lights aren’t exactly legal in all states. Along with this, there are some states that will only allow hunting coyotes at night if you are utilizing a shotgun.

Simply put, hunting coyotes can be tricky both legally and physically. Hunting these creatures under the cover of darkness in your own neighborhood might sound easy, even like cheating for some, but this is not the case at all.

Coyotes are built for the dark! Their eyes, their noses, and their ears are all built to give them the edge during the late-night hours. Combine this with the fact that they aren’t afraid to attack under certain circumstances and an inexperienced hunter could be looking at a volatile situation.

Proper Scouting


Just because you are hunting at night doesn’t mean that you can’t still use the day to your advantage. You’re going to need to even further familiarize yourself with the area. Whether it is the woods in your backyard or unfamiliar hunting grounds, you can use the day hours to scout out the area.

Try to find out exactly where the coyotes are hunting and living. You’ll especially want to pay close attention to transition areas. Like where a yard transitions to cropland, or grassland. Check where creeks and timbers merge together.

Put yourself in the mind of your prey and try to remember that coyotes will be on the hunt for smaller rodents.

They’ll eat everything from birds, to insects, neighborhood dogs, rabbits, squirrels, and just about anything with meat on it.

Always Consider The Wind

Most people think that when night hunting they can just stay out of sight and be successful. This is not the case at all. As mentioned, coyotes were built for night hunting and their noses give them a keen advantage.

They’ll likely be able to smell you from miles away before you even know they are in the area.

One of the ways they do this is via the wind. They not only use the wind to their advantage when approaching prey or areas, but a small crosswind or headwind can carry your scent much further than you realize. You’ll likely want to take advantage of some kind of scent cover-up agent, but you’ll also still want to keep the wind in mind when choosing a location.

If using a coyote call, the creature will more than likely work its way from downwind to you.

This gives him the benefit of scouting the area with his nose before he even has a visual on it.

You’ll also want to factor in your lighting conditions. Just because you are in the dark right now doesn’t mean that you will be when you take a shot.

If you want to make a successful hit, you’ll likely need the assistance of a good light to do so. In order to use your good hunting light, you’ll need the most effective area for lighting.

Open areas and higher elevated areas are going to be your best option, as they’ll provide a much clearer view of your target. Certain terrain along with foliage can block your light’s beam as well as your prey.

Coyote Hunting With Lights

Hunting at night requires more patience and skills than it does during the day. This is especially true when hunting such an adept creature like the coyote. You’re going to need to do more than just sit in the dark with a flashlight and use prey calls.

You’ll need to be able to properly scan the area with a high-performance hunting light. Not only this, but you’ll have to scan in cycles because you don’t want to scare off your prey.

The best tip is to scan the area where the coyote will likely be coming from back and forth. Know the area where the coyote will be coming from and scan it back and forth quickly with a high-performance hunting light.  You’ll want to be on the lookout for the coyote’s eyes because this is likely the first thing that you’ll sport. To be more specific, the glare of the eyes.

Choosing The Right Type Of Light For You

When it comes to the world of high-performance coyote hunting lights, there is no shortage on the market. Sure, some are better than others and offer distinct advantages over the competition, but at the end of the day it comes down to meeting your own specific needs and requirements.

Hunters these days have the option of selecting a weapon-mounted light, a light with a handle, or both. Of course, each light will work better in different situations, so knowing your need and requirements will help narrow the options.

To start, lights with a handle will require a weapon that is mounted to a tripod or bipod. The biggest advantage of this model is the versatility and maneuverability. You’ll be able to cast your light faster and more effectively with this model. There is nothing wrong with good weapon-mounted lights, but they can limit you.

You won’t be able to scan as quickly and you might even be limited as to where you can safely point the light because it’s going to be attached to the barrel of your loaded weapon.

Opting to hunt with a partner can make a world of difference as well. He or she can be in charge of controlling the light and you’ll be free to make whatever changes and adjustments you need to make. Just remember that you’ll like want to develop some kind of hand communication system before heading into the woods because the sound will only degrade your chances of getting your prey.

You’ll likely also want to switch between duties because no one is going to opt to come along with you if they are in charge of controlling the light the entire time. They’ll likely want to get in on the action as well.

The Eyeshine Is Key

When hunting with a light, it is the glare of the eye that is going to be key. You don’t want to start shining and expecting to find the entire body or outline of the creature. This won’t likely be the case and it’ll only slow down your efforts. Spotting the eyes quickly will allow you to identify the target and adjust whatever strategies are needed.

Choosing A Light Color

Just like a mounting option, you’ll also have to decide on a light color.

White Light – White light offers the greatest amount of detail and can give you a better intuition of the range of the target, but it will also alter your peripheral vision more than the colored options

Red Light – Red light will provide the best eye shine and is more of a traditional means of hunting. Hunters have been using red lights to hunt coyotes for years because they reduce eye fatigue

Green Light – Green lights are excellent for seeing dark objects better. The only problem is that this comes with a lot of eye fatigue.


As you can see, hunting a coyote at night requires a light. Not just any light, but a high-performance light that was specifically designed to meet your hunting standards and requirements.

Make sure you know the area you are hunting along with your hunting needs and this will all but tell you the best light for your situation.

Brian Koller

Growing up on a farm in eastern PA, I’ve grown fond of wildlife and the woods and learning about the critters and firewood and everything else in-between. I made this site to share my experiences and knowledge.

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