Saturday, April 4, 2009

Our Resident Gray Fox

We've had a gray fox coming around our place for a year now, eating the cat food that we had originally put out for the raccoons - but hey, whoever gets there first is welcome to it! Well, other than the fox and raccoons, we have opossums, skunks, and two particular deer that eat it. The two deer are a doe and her fawn from last year. The doe started eating the cat food, and when the fawn got bigger, it did also. And they also have their own food -- sweet feed that we put out just for them! We have quite the show to watch from our kitchen window right before dark, and even after dark when we turn the outside light on, which doesn't seem to bother the critters. Angel Kitty watches, too - safely from inside, of course!

Here was a little drama that took place out of our kitchen window last evening.

First I saw the fox approach the feeding area from the front of the house and I took his picture . . .

Oops! I think he saw me!
Isn't he beautiful? Must be all that cat food he eats . . .

Well, NOW who's watching him?

Oh, of course - that deer again! He's keeping his eyes on him! (note the deer in the right hand side of the picture)
Okay, now the deer's on the move. Just a few more quick bites . . .

Time to skedaddle!

And Up the hill he goes. Long after he's gone, the deer continue to maintain a vigil.

Last year I got a video of the deer chasing the fox away from the bird feeder area where we used to put out the cat food. The fox kept sneaking back and the deer kept chasing him away. This went on for some time and it became obvious that it was just a fun game for them to see who's faster and smarter - fox or deer. Although the deer were pretty quick and I know those hooves could do some harm, the fox was pretty sly when he slinked down behind the trees and crept up to the food! I wish I could upload the video, but my dial-up internet makes it time-prohibitive!

Some trivia about the Gray Fox: It is primarily nocturnal, but can sometimes been seen foraging by day in brush, thick foliage, or timber. It is the only American canid (canine) with tree climbing ability, and it occasionally forages in trees and frequently takes refuge in them, especially in leaning or thickly branched ones. It favors den sites in woodlands and among boulders on the slopes of rocky ridges. Well, that explains why we have gray foxes here, with all of the rocky ridges we have -- and caves, too!


  1. Neat Aleta.... I know you love seeing all of the wildlife around your home. You are in a great area--and with all of that land, I'm sure you DO have lots of night-critters also. We've got quite a few also --since this area is 'protected'... The wildlife are safe here.

    Have a great evening.

  2. Aleta, you are so lucky to live where you can see all kinds of wildlife, coming and going in your garden..
    We had eight deer in the yard this morning, I just love to watch them, though they were eating my flowers at the mailbox ;)
    Oh well, it's the price you pay.

  3. animals are funny,aren`t they?you captured some great pictures!phylliso

  4. nice sequence of shots showing the interaction between the fox and the deer. Animals are fascinating!

  5. Yes, we love our wild (and domestic) animals. As for eating the flowers, yes there are certain flowers that we just can't plant here because the deer will eat them. Also, the raccoons dig up freshly turned earth so if I do plant something new, I have to cage it up until the earth settles. We have blueberry bushes and a cherry tree planted - in the garden behind the electrified fence!
    Thanks to you all for visiting!