New Year’s Eve Fox.

Sunrise: 08.19 Sunset: 04.05

Hoo Wood fox was lurking in his usual place this evening, high up on the bank, 30 metres from the path, in amongst the oak trees. I see him here often; his eyes flashing in the beam of my torch.

Normally, with my torch beam squarely on him, he sits tightly rooted to the spot. This evening, though,  he must have decided it was time to investigate the strange light. The beam didn’t even cause him to blink, and I use a very powerful torch. Occasionally, he heard a sound and turned his head towards it.

Closer he came, one step at a time, until he was no more than three metres in front of me.

Spike sat patiently at my side, and the fox was sitting almost within grabbing distance. Spike’s nose began to twitch, and he fidgeted slightly. Suddenly he totally lost control and lurched himself at the fox. . . .

This entry was posted in Foxes, Wilden Marsh Nature Reserve and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to New Year’s Eve Fox.

  1. pilipala51 says:

    Oh no………………….?

    Like

  2. Mark Goodwin says:

    And? AND?…..Don’t leave me hanging there!
    🙂 HNY Mike.

    Like

    • mike585 says:

      Thanks, Mark.

      I hope you have a Happy New Year, too. 🙂

      . . . Suddenly he totally lost control and lurched himself at the fox.

      In torchlight, the fox appeared larger than my Cocker Spaniel Field Dog. Spike, now in hunting mode, made a purposeful and determined attack. There wasn’t frantic barking, or frenzied rushing: just honed canine instinct.

      Spike was on the fox in a second. Time seems to slow down at moments such as these. The intense glare of my torch had affected the fox’s night vision: Spike’s onslaught bowling him head-over-heals and legs in all directions. It didn’t take long to recover, though, and the difference in speed and agility between them soon became clear. Jumping clean over my dog, I expected the fox to make a break for it, but he didn’t; he might have felt it too dangerous to turn his back on Spike.

      It occurred to me that the situation might develop into a full-on fight, which would be unusual. Foxes are excellent hunters, but they avoid fights with domestic dogs. Spike turned and charged again. This time the fox was ready and once again leapt clean over the dog. He landed with a twisting movement that put him in a position where he was on all fours facing my dog. Maybe the fox would now make full use of its advantage and attack? Before Spike had completed his turning manoeuvre, the red dog had leapt into the air, hitting him square on his back with all four paws. It was now Spike’s turn to be bowled over under the force of the fox’s impact. The fox was gone by the time he had regained his composure. Spike knew he was beaten and didn’t bother with pursuit.

      I see the best animal action during the hours of darkness.

      Like

  3. Vicki (from Victoria A Photography) says:

    And……?
    (what happened).

    Hope you have a Happy New Year, Mike.

    Look forward to seeing more nature images in 2014 (as long as they’re not the insects & creepy crawly variety). I think I mentioned your insect macros were getting a little too close for comfort. I never really knew I had this aversion until this year.

    Like

    • mike585 says:

      Thanks, Vicki.

      I hope you have a Happy New Year, too. 🙂

      I’m afraid that there will be more close-ups if invertebrates. >>>

      . . . Suddenly he totally lost control and lurched himself at the fox.

      In torchlight, the fox appeared larger than my Cocker Spaniel Field Dog. Spike, now in hunting mode, made a purposeful and determined attack. There wasn’t frantic barking, or frenzied rushing: just honed canine instinct.

      Spike was on the fox in a second. Time seems to slow down at moments such as these. The intense glare of my torch had affected the fox’s night vision: Spike’s onslaught bowling him head-over-heals and legs in all directions. It didn’t take long to recover, though, and the difference in speed and agility between them soon became clear. Jumping clean over my dog, I expected the fox to make a break for it, but he didn’t; he might have felt it too dangerous to turn his back on Spike.

      It occurred to me that the situation might develop into a full-on fight, which would be unusual. Foxes are excellent hunters, but they avoid fights with domestic dogs. Spike turned and charged again. This time the fox was ready and once again leapt clean over the dog. He landed with a twisting movement that put him in a position where he was on all fours facing my dog. Maybe the fox would now make full use of its advantage and attack? Before Spike had completed his turning manoeuvre, the red dog had leapt into the air, hitting him square on his back with all four paws. It was now Spike’s turn to be bowled over under the force of the fox’s impact. The fox was gone by the time he had regained his composure. Spike knew he was beaten and didn’t bother with pursuit.

      I see the best animal action during the hours of darkness.

      Like

      • Vicki (from Victoria A Photography) says:

        Phew!
        Sounds like no animal was hurt – only Spike’s feelings.
        The only animals that I have seen fighting ‘claw & tooth’ are the Meerkats at the zoo. Gosh, they get vicious.

        Like

      • mike585 says:

        The reason neither animal was hurt, is more to do with the fox not wanting to get damaged – life is hard enough for him as it is. He is faster, fitter, and can
        think more effectively than my dog.

        Spike has his food in a bowl every day. The fox must hunt his.

        The fox was only in danger when Spike bowled him over. If Spike had managed to get his jaws clamped to the fox, it might have been a different story.

        Like

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