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I have seen a couple incidences of deer behavior that seemed beyond their intelligence level, and my son has seen one such incident. First, my son shot a deer with an arrow. The deer he hit, and a couple others with it, ran 50 yards and stopped. The arrow was still in the deer but one end of it was sticking out. One of the others grabbed the arrow with its mouth and pulled it out. (The deer died shortly after that). I saw three deer, probably a doe and her fawns, crossing a very flat picked cornfield. They traveled a grassy waterway which would have kept them as low as possible. What I would not have believed if I had not seen it myself was that they were walking on their knees rather than their hooves. They traveled at least 50 yards that way! I guess that got them about a foot lower, but they had to swing their heads back and forth to keep going so that movement looked really weird. I was sitting on a bluff overlooking the field so had a very good view. I saw a doe and her two fawns in a shallow creek, about 6 inches or a foot deep and about 30 feet wide. The two fawns started chasing each other around the doe which kicked up a lot of water. The doe then clobbered one of them with one of her front hooves and they quit the shenanigans. It was like she was saying they were not in a good place to be making a ruckus and attracting unwanted attention. One time I saw a deer and a coyote out in a picked soybean field about 600 yards away and looked at them with my binoculars. It was too far to shoot with the rifle I had with. The deer pretty much just stood there and but the coyote looked like it wanted to play. It rolled around on the ground and wagged its tail and got down on the ground and crawled toward it. Finally the deer started walking away and the coyote followed it with its tail wagging. The deer was much larger than the coyote and did not appear frightened, but it did not appear to want to play with the coyote. Eventually the coyote gave up and went away.
 

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Don What I want to know is what do you put in your thermos besides coffee? Just kidding. We were turkey hunting in an SW Iowa soybean field with 5 decoys set up when deer came up out of the woods and began to kick the [email protected] out of the decoys. They totally demolished our set. Then they started chicken fighting with their front feet while standing on their back ones. My guest, sitting in front of me busted out laughing and the whole morality play up and left.
 

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Those Coyotes can be pretty shrewd as I have seen the evidence of a coyote/Deer kill. In one case the coyotes pushed the deer around the hillside and then straight up the steepest part of the hill where there was a gully caused by rain run-off, This was the kill site. A couple of other kill sites ranged from the deer being pushed into the steepest part of the creek bank where it was taken and another with the deer being funneled into the inner-most part of a "V" that was formed by the very thick multiflower rose.

I do not know if your beanfield coyote was up to any tricks but our eastern yotes, "that can be found in IL or Iowa" may have some red wolf in them and have a few traits that the wolf pack uses. Perhaps your coyote was trying to distract the deer as there may have been others in wait? I know, a long shot if so.
I wouldn't put much past a coyote as it is an opportunist pure and simple. They can be fed by people but then will start taking house pets or even attacking children if left unchecked.

The deer, in my experience, will not even put up with the scent of the coyote. I called in a pair just last year that slipped in between the woods and 600yds of picked corn where there happened to be 12 to 16 deer in view and feeding. This hunt was quite cool as the deer which were strung out roughly 200 to 400yds away from me would bust those coyotes by snorting loudly as the coyotes approached my position. The Coyotes were upwind of those deer but never got closer that 150yd to them.
This was very cool as said cause I had a deer alarm for coyotes and could actually track the coyotes position!. This hunt was an exception for myself as I was used to being disappointed when deer would show up at a calling site...I figured that the deer knew where the coyotes weren't!!!

The deer are very shrewd in their own right and have a bag of tricks. I did see a weakness one time when a group of five approached my position at a trot. They had exited a woods and were crossing a field of soybean stubble and were about to enter another woods with myself being just inside the edge.
That lead doe slowed down and checked out my decoy with some interest which was ahead of me and to my right. The other four were fanned out in an arch with the little yearling being last in line and to my left.
That little deer would catch my scent now and again and would snort an whirl due to a slight down draft from the cooling air...it would not run off as the others stood stock still waiting on the lead doe to choose a path...Now you would think that the other four, or at least the lead doe would have investigated or even ran as the little deer did this two or three times, but it did not happen. Absolutely No Respect was given to the little one! Go Figure!
 

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Brock,
Those deer got lucky in this case as the season was out and I was Coyote hunting. If the hunting season went year around, I could probably average eight or nine deer for every coyote taken.
That would give me around 360 deer to eat each year...I can taste that tenderloin now!...Could be a bunch more considering that I only hunt cold weather coyotes and skin them all.
 

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About 15 years ago there were a number of coyotes around our place. More than I ever remember befor and more than I have seen since. As a kid of 10 or 11 out raking hay I remember them playing cat and mouse with my dog trying to get her away from the tractor and close to a bunch of them hiding in the fence row. There were two times I had to bail off of the tractor and run across the field yelling.

What they would do is one would run out and start "playing" with her. It would get her to chase it a little ways then dive out of the field. Moments later either it or another one would show and repeat the process. If you watched you could see where they were trying to lead her to. It was always the best cover around and there would be three or four sets of ears poking up.

After the second time my dad saw it and the problem was quickly resolved.
 

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Coyotes here use the "play and trap" method, too. Dad's last dog he had when he died would go out and "play" with them all the time. He generally came home covered in blood.... theirs! Ole Patch is a helluva dog! Border collies are awesome, if you have enough room for them and at least a 5 IQ point advantage!

Don,

The deer were doing that to keep from getting stuck in the mud. Their feet are so small that they don't spread out the weight very well. Kinda like taking factory tires to the mudpit. In a muddy field, I can run down a deer on a good cowhorse pretty quick. I know I could rope one, but I'm not that stupid. A deer will come back up the rope and do a pretty believable pissed off ninja impression.

Also, blacktail deer and Tule Elk in Oregon are known for getting down and belly crawling under ferns and brush to escape and confound hunters that swear up and down they simply vanished!
 
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