The following is the third segment of Beast Master Hunting’s “Kill of the Month.” Each month, Nick Atkinson, founder of Beast Master Hunting, will provide the Ballistic audience with first-hand video of his hunts. Enjoy!
This video of a large Texas coyote was recorded at about 160 yards, through a Trijicon MKIII 60MM thermal optic. The sound you hear in the background is a Foxpro Shockwave game call. You will hear two shooters and one spotter in the video and learn how tough it can be to hit a running coyote.
The Running Coyote
Winter is the best time to hunt coyotes; both because their fur is better — if you are keeping or selling it — and also because they generally respond better to distress calls.
This particular coyote was a large older male, and a smart one at that. He came in at a trot and refused to stop. The video picks up as he was leaving the area. We made the decision to shoot him on the run.
My first shot broke exactly where I wanted it to, but I underestimated how fast the coyote was moving and you can hear my spotter say, “behind him,” indicating that I did not lead the coyote enough. I adjusted my hold and broke another shot, while at the same time, my hunting partner was also shooting.
The problem with the next few shots was, as we lead him more, he sped up more. A male coyote can sprint at more than 40 mph! Our spotter continued to call out our misses behind him, so I decided to swing my sight about as far in front of the running coyote as I could, and still see him on the side of the screen.
I broke the shot from my Beast Master Hunting rifle and heard the satisfying thump of a perfect shot. The coyote, who was running close to flat out, tumbled through the plowed field and came to a stop. Some will say you should only take shots you know will be good hits, however, when you are coyote hunting Texas farm land with a clear backstop, any shot on a coyote is a good shot. Another dead coyote, another happy rancher.
About the Author
A former police officer, professional competition shooter by day and professional varmint hunter by night — that sentence sums up Nick Atkinson’s career. Since 2012, Atkinson has traveled the country, competing at the pro level in national level 3-gun competitions. In 2016, Atkinson decided to take his hunting to the next level. Shortly after, Beast Master Hunting was founded.