Sunday, June 24, 2012

Fox, Gray Fox

Recently we alerted the public to the fact that there is a serial killer on the loose here at the Red House Garden.  Fairly sure that this serial killer is from the Vole family, we have put out deterrents in the form of castor oil.  While this has slowed the number of plants that have fallen victim to this wily killer, maiming and injury has still occurred. 

Thus, Red House Garden authorities were rather excited when a singular individual showed up who might be able to help.

Meet Gray Fox.

Gray Fox
This individual startled all of us here at the Red House Garden by deciding to perch on top of the garden fence.  Fox was very shy, especially as most of the family was in the screened-in porch at the time,  but came in anyway to inspect the area.


I am a little worried, as Fox seemed to spend the most time looking near the bird feeders, even though our serial killer Vole has not been anywhere near that location...


Fox did not stay long, but hopefully this hunter will return in the evening to catch Vole in the act! (and hopefully leave those bird feeders alone...)


Facts about Gray Foxes:

- Foxes are mostly nocturnal, but they do sometimes come out in daylight hours as they hunt birds and squirrels which are out during the day.  In the spring, foxes might be more often seen in daylight, as they are hunting for food for their babies.

(Of course, if the foxes show signs of rabies, such as aggression, stumbling, or foaming at the mouth, call Animal Control.)

-  Gray foxes can climb trees.  They have been known to sleep or hide in hawk or owl nests.  They will even sometimes raise a litter high up in a hollow tree, though rarely.

- Along with small animals, gray foxes also eat fruit and nuts.

- The Gray Fox is the only native fox here in North Carolina.  (We now also have red foxes here, descended from European foxes that were brought over for hunting.)

16 comments:

  1. How interesting! I had no idea they can climb trees.
    Great photos. What a treat. I love foxes but have never seen one outside of a wildlife rescue habitat except for two times in my life. They are regal creatures. I'm more likely to see a coyote in the wild.
    Hope he returns for you.

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  2. How exciting! Great captures too! I know we have foxes around here but I have never seen one. I hear the coyotes at night and have seen bobcats in our garden but never a fox. I am surprised that the voles haven't been around your bird feeder. The litter from the feeders attract them but I love the birds so I haven't gotten rid of mine. I hope your fox will help get your vole population under control.

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  3. Fascinated at the thought of foxes climbing trees. It looks like a young one, hope he catches the evil one.

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  4. Indie, certainly you had to have a lot of patience and to be in silence that make these pictures!
    A gray fox is very cautious, it's good that it caught your killer.

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  5. Ah, maybe that's what I need in my garden, too, to expel the chipmunks and rabbits. They are both evil invaders, as well!

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  6. What a handsome fellow! Or is she a lovely lady? Regardless, what a wonderful visitor to see in your garden.

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  7. Hi there, it always amazes me that such creatures that I thought only existed in the wild can just waltz into your garden one day like it was theirs. Good luck with the voles, hope the hunt does do more damage to your garden!

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  8. This is a really cool garden visitor, especially considering you have voles. I have not seen a fox ever come from the gorge to the neighborhood. I have seen them there, but they disappear quickly. Nice captures.

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  9. A beautiful animal, and what a treat that you got to see one in daylight. Watch out voles, I think you might have met your match.

    Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams

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  10. He looks a bit scary! Think I'd rather bump in to the vole than Mr Fox!!

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  11. Well done for getting a photo of him, they move so quickly.
    I blamed a lot of the damage in my garden on foxes, but the other day I saw two innocent-looking cats poking around in my pot of seedlings.

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  12. Ah, we also have a Gray Fox visitor here at NHGarden! Beautiful animal!

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  13. I would love to see a fox in my garden. I think you should take it as a huge compliment that a fox feels comfortable in your garden.

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  14. I am green with envy. I would love to have a air of gray foxes move in here. Their rodent eating activity even makes up for their habit of marking the tops of Ed's walls with scat!

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  15. I was rather shocked to see the fox in my yard, especially since me and the kids were out in the screened in porch! I consider my house to be in the suburbs, even though there is a natural area nearby. I am constantly surprised with all the wildlife that live around! I just hope that fox helps out with my vole problem!

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