Prickly City by Scott Stantis

Prickly City

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  1. Darsan54

    Darsan54 GoComics PRO Member said, almost 4 years ago

    Aaaaaaah, there’s a connection to reality.

  2. zellman

    zellman said, almost 4 years ago

    or what another canine news network wants to hear. sigh.

  3. fritzoid

    fritzoid GoComics PRO Member said, almost 4 years ago


    “or what another canine news network wants to hear.”

    “Vulpine” would be more correct. Foxes are of the family Canidae but of the genus Vulpes. Coyotes, like wolves and jackals (and pooches), are genus Canis. Wolves also have the more-specific “lupine” (from the Latin lupus), but since coyotes (Canis latrans or “barking dog”) were unknown in the Old World we don’t have a common adjective to describe them. I suppose we could coin “latrine”, but that would lead to…misunderstandings. :-)


  4. fritzoid

    fritzoid GoComics PRO Member said, almost 4 years ago

    By the way (to add to the comments of Thursday), coyotes have now been spotted in every U.S. state except Hawai’i. This is DESPITE the fact that (unlike wolves) coyotes are still considered “varmints” under the wildlife-protection laws, and it’s legal to shoot them on sight.

    As has been mentioned before, coyotes are extraordinarily adaptable, and thrive under conditions which wolves would find unendurable (and the only proven effective method of controlling coyote populations is to have a viable wolf population; they don’t share territory well). So Winslow shouldn’t worry, time is on their side. They were here in North America before the Europeans, before ANY humans, and even before the wolves, and they’ll be here after we’re gone.

  5. fritzoid

    fritzoid GoComics PRO Member said, almost 4 years ago

    “Wolves are in the minority now and some of them are breeding with coyotes producing a formidable hybrid. It will be interesting to see if they can breed true.”

    Wolves may have always been a minority in sheer numbers, even when they controlled more territory, because a range of (say) 100 square miles can support a far greater number of coyotes than wolves. Sort of like looking at a map of the U.S. divided between Red and Blue; the Red parts cover more area, but the Blue parts are more densely populated.

    I read once that coy-wolves (and coy-dogs) are more likely to be absorbed back into the wolf populations than into coyote populations; coyote mating seasons and wolf mating seasons overlap but aren’t identical, and coyotes are rare (nearly unique) among mammals in that the males are as subject to being “in the mood” as the females. If a male coyote encounters a female wolf (or dog) in estrus, he won’t be interested unless he’s also at the proper point in his seasonal cycle. Male coy-wolf hybrids (I believe) may also have cycles, but their cycles are out of shift with those of pureblood coyotes. In the long run, that’s kept the coyote gene pool freer of wolf influences than the reverse (I’ve since read somewhere else that difference isn’t all THAT significant, so make of it what you will).

    This isn’t in any way intended to gainsay what you posted, but since wolves and coyotes have been neighbors for time immemorial, I’m inclined to believe that a certain amount of cross-breeding at the borders has always occurred. And if the coy-wolves haven’t dominated either parent-population yet I’m uncertain why present conditions would change that.

  6. KPOM

    KPOM said, almost 4 years ago

    Is Winslow’s last name Rove or Morris?

  7. fritzoid

    fritzoid GoComics PRO Member said, almost 4 years ago

    Of course. But even before that, the balance between coyotes and wolves was stable, because of terrain. While coyotes can live anywhere wolves can live (provided there are no wolves PRESENTLY living there), the reverse is not true. Much of the U.S. (including Prickly City and its surroundings) is simply not suitable habitat for wolves, even if there were no human beings around. Even in the areas where wolves are being reintroduced, they may never reach the threshold level where they can be taken off “protected” status; they’re too wide-ranging, too dangerous to livestock, and quite frankly too visible. A wolf living in Yellowstone may be safe, but the moment he steps outside the park’s boundaries his life expentancy drops almost to nil (and wolves can’t read the boundary signs). Whereas coyotes may be living in the tall grass along the highway, or under the house next door, or even in the dumpsters behind City Hall, and even if you know they’re there there’s not much you can do about ’em.

    Both in nature an in folklore, coyotes have a similar relationship to wolves in the U.S. as foxes do in Europe. Isengrim the Wolf may be stronger and more ferocious, but Reynard the Fox is smarter and sneakier.

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