Oops, sorry…

Posted: June 12th, 2009 under Wildlife.
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We’d gone out in the hot (very!) afternoon to look at the effect of rain on the grass garden, skirting the tiny (only two fruit trees left, and never had more than six) orchard on the mound a former owner had scuffed up to put a house-for-sale on. ..but luckly, he ran out of money.

So we walked on a path Richard had mowed along the west fence and then along the north fence, and then turned back toward the orchard.  One of the remaining pears is on the NW corner of the “hump”, and near it are a few natives woody plants.   I noticed that the kidneywood was blooming and stopped to smell it and start to photograph a handsome large wasp nectaring on its upper flowers when I heard a rustling in the dense shade under the pear.  I thought it was a big lizard (we have big lizards that make a lot of noise on bark) but didn’t see it–and suddenly a little gray and red blur with a black stripe down its back ran down the far corner of the hump (where a peach tree used to be) and across the grassy area to the north horse lot, squeezing through the gate.

It was a young gray fox.   I’m SO sorry I disturbed it–foxes love to nap in dense shade in the middle of the day, and this one is probably in our garden because there’s water in the water garden and ample mice and grasshoppers and other prey.   And I scared it.

The fox loped the length of the north horse lot, ducked behind the big enclosure full of roses (pipe gates and wire making a big circle around the Cecile Brunner so the horses can’t eat it–there’s now a huge mound of rosebush that the birds love.  I half-expected the fox to hide in there, but it ran out from behind the roses and exited our northwest corner…which put it right next to the secondary drainage outlet.  Plenty of cover in there.

Still…I’m sorry I scared it.   It’s a very hot day.  If it hadn’t panicked, I’d never have known it was there.

No, I wasn’t quick enough to take a picture.   I was staring.


  • Comment by AnnMCN — June 12, 2009 @ 7:59 pm


    It may well come back, though. I’ve seen a fox running behind my condo in very urban metro Atlanta, so your fox might just need to assess the situation.

    Isn’t it frustrating, that with all the good will, and good information, you still can make a mis-step and frighten it away?

  • Comment by elizabeth — June 12, 2009 @ 10:43 pm


    Very frustrating. At one time we had a vixen who–because the first time I saw her, I saw her first–gradually became a little habituated to us, and allowed us to watch her young’uns at play. That group died of distemper (main cause of gray fox deaths here, TPWD says.) We haven’t achieved any trust with the newer foxes on the place, but are glad to have them. Our barn cat is getting old, and isn’t as good a mouser as she used to be.

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