Tag Archives: foxes

Another Morning Visitor

1 Jan

We have another fox visiting us in the morning. It isn’t Julie (see May 3, 2015) but she must have “spoken” to Julie, as she knows all the tricks. Maybe she’s one of Julie’s kits.

She comes out very early, and sits in the back, about halfway between the barn and the food dish, staring at the house. If we’re in the kitchen we’ll see her and go out with her breakfast. If we don’t connect then, she comes down to the little garden outside the den window, and will watch us from there. Again, as soon as we notice her, we go out with the dog food, and she bolts away.

It was brutally cold this morning; the temp was 6°, with a wind chill of -2° – and I had come back in to warm my “widdle finners” after I’d filled the birdfeeders. I was sitting here in front of the computer, with my hands wrapped around a hot cuppa, when she sat down, made herself comfortable, and stared at me.

Mind you, the wildlife around here is just as spoiled as it can be. One summer evening we had gone out, and had not fed the foxes before we left. When we pulled into the carport, our headlights picked up a kit sitting on the other side of the stream. As soon as I got out of the car, he started yipping at me. I grabbed the bucket and started out to the barn, with Junior trotting along on the other side, barking at me the entire way.  As soon as I’d poured out the kibble, he dashed across and started to eat without waiting for me to get out of sight.

I can’t imagine living anyplace else in the world.

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Reflections on a Snowstorm

10 Dec

Well, not exactly a storm. It started snowing about 10 AM yesterday morning, and kept at it until sometime after 8 last night. In spite of it all, we only got about two inches, if that.

While The Squire and I were checking email this morning, a fox came into the yard, checking and sniffing around the birdfeeders. I went into the kitchen and scooped up a  dish of dog food, which I carried out to the back forty. When I came back down the fox, of course, was long gone. I figured he’d headed back to the woods, sans squirrel, but The Squire said the critter nosed around and gathered up a mouthful of peanuts before heading off. “You could see his cheeks bulging out, and he was looking for more!”

Our church hosted a Quarter Auction last night. It was going great guns when we arrived and still coming down when I left the church. This morning, there was still a good bit of snow on the ground, but the roads and sidewalks had never accumulated anything more that puddles, and the temp had already climbed to nearly 40°F. After having about 60 people at the auction last night, braving uncertain weather, we had a grand total of 18 at the late service, when there was no likelihood of road trouble.

Sometimes I wonder about people.

Morning Visitors

12 Oct

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The days have been nicely warm since Matthew blew past,  but the nights are definitely cooler.

We’ve had a couple of early morning visitors, perhaps gearing up for the winter. Yesterday, I was just floating to the surface when I heard red-tailed hawk screaming outside my window, or perhaps that was what awakened me.  At exactly the same time, I heard a bullfrog croak, quite loudly, and then more faintly in the distance. I wonder if I was ear-witness to a murder?

This morning, we had a fox in the yard,  eating goodness knows what under the tree. The Squire said he was out there quite a while, nosing around. I don’t think he was eating the peanuts I put out for the squirrels, and those critters were wise enough to stay in the tree until Bre’r Fox wandered off  again.bittern

Then, later in the morning, we saw a bittern wandering around under the birdfeeder, of all places. He flew over to the edge of the pond, and apparently managed to catch enough fish to tide him over until his next stop.

I love living here!

 

Oh, Yetch!

23 Aug

Last night, I slipped my feet into my boots so I could go feed the fish.

And felt something soft and tender.

Eddie, bless his little black heart, had left a newly dead mouse in my right boot. That or the poor thing had escaped Eddie’s tender ministrations by crawling into the boot to hide. Probably the latter, as I couldn’t find any wounds on it other than a bite in the vicinity of the right shoulder blade. I held it for a moment, and it was still vaguely warm, but definitely dead. Poor baby. I think the thing that disturbs me most about mice and deer is that they don’t close their eyes when they die. They continue to look at you beseechingly.

I threw him into the back forty for the foxes to eat. So much for empathy.

In the future I will shake out my boots before I put them on. No telling what else the dear boy may drag home.

Never a Camera…

16 Jun

The Squire went out to the barn late this afternoon to feed the raccoons and foxes. He heard a rustling noise and stopped walking, but crept up so he could see beyond the barn, into what we call “the back f0rty”.  (Actually, the electric company right-of-way.)

There was a young buck and a fox frolicking in the clearing, play bowing and chasing each other around. The buck saw The Squire and stopped, stared at him and stomped one foot, which is usually a warning sign that “one of us is going to get hurt”. When my husband didn’t move, the deer apparently figured he was harmless, so he sort of shrugged, turned around and walked back into the woods. The fox didn’t notice my husband, and after his  playmate left he sat up on his haunches, with his back to The Squire, and turned his head his way and that, apparently seeking some movement in the tall grass that would indicate a stray rabbit or a squirrel for supper. After a few moments, he turned his head far enough to spot The Squire. He looked at my husband for a second or two, with this “How long have you been here?” expression, and then bolted across the stream and up the hill.

Never a camera when you need one.

Moving Day

11 Jun

In an effort to keep the raccoons from eating the bird seed, and the male fox from eating the squirrels, we have begun feeding both sets of critters out by the woods, instead of feeding the ring-tailed beasts on the carport and the “red coats” in the back forty.  In addition to filling the birdfeeders, we still put peanuts and seed in a 5 foot length of PVC pipe outside the den window so the squirrels can get them and the blue jays can’t.

This morning when I went out to feed the “house pets” the pipe was missing.

I looked in the front yard, and The Squire walked along the stream to see if the raccoon had dragged it up the hill. Nada. The pipe is far too narrow for the raccoons to get into, so whatever went on last night must have been very interesting.

A shame we missed the show.

Making His Point

7 Dec

As I’ve mentioned before, we generally keep our dog on a 40 foot wire, with a 30 foot line. This gives him plenty of space to run; he can reach the kitchen door, but cannot get as far as the barn, or the spot where we feed the foxes.  Almost every night, he will convince me there’s something out back that needs barking at, usually deer or the foxes.  I’ve seen the foxes sit down, just out of his reach, while the poor dog dashes back and forth in frustration, and I swear I can hear them laughing.

Last night, Blazer went racing out with his rope already tangled around the tree (I need to keep an eye on that), and pulled the hook clean off the end.  This morning, I had to let him out without tying him – always a risk, but I figured he wouldn’t go far on an empty stomach, and he didn’t. Pretty much out and back. The Squire replaced the hook after he had eaten his breakfast.

A little while ago, The Squire took the compost out for me and came back chuckling.

It seems that while Blazer was out taking care of business, he left a “message” in the foxes’ dish.