Slow painting

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Tea break visitor

As we sat having a tea break on Saturday afternoon we saw the fox trotting along the road at the front of our plot. My husband was fishing in a plastic bag for some biscuits, and as he did so the fox paused, sniffed the air, and then came trotting purposefully up the far side of the plot and round behind the shed. I got up to get the camera, thinking I would take a shot of it as it went past. When I came out of the shed, it was right where you see it in this shot, staring intently at my husband as he bit into a biscuit. Then, incredibly, it sat down and begged.

A piece of yoghurt-coated raspberry biscuit bar went winging its way, and was gobbled up. In this next shot it looks exactly like a dog, mouth watering, grudging its owner every bite:

After throwing it a chocolate chip cookie, my husband told it that was all it was getting, and to go away. So it did.

Later, when we were shutting up the shed to come home and the plastic bag rustled again, the fox reappeared. I don't quite know what I feel. Rather sad to see it so tame, but pleased that it's obviously having a good experience of humans at the allotment site.


Darla said...

Oh be careful! The law here is not to feed them. They can attack you know.

Lindy MacDuff said...

What a neat experience, but just don't forget it is a wild animal even though it may seem tame. How fortunate that you were able to capture the moments. It is a beautiful fox. By the way, your garden is looking quite healthy.

Linda said...

Thanks for the warnings, Darla and Lindy. We will be careful. There's no way we would get closer than we were - apart from anything it's likely to be full of fleas! We don't intend to feed it on an ongoing basis - it would become a nuisance and since it is a wild animal it will just have to take its chances. However, there is no rabies in the UK (the last indigenous case was in 1922). But I don't want a fox digging up my plot looking for chocolate chip cookies!

Deslilas said...

You and your husband are true "Petits Princes" (cf Saint-Exupery).

Valeri said...

It actually looks like a young one and quite healthy. We had foxes and badgers until they built houses behind us! They are useful as they keep cats away! And cats can do a lot of damage digging!

Shady Gardener said...

What an amazing experience! I, too, would be a bit leery of getting to close to it. It's a beautiful animal, though. We see one occasionally, here in our neighborhood. And HEAR it in the nighttime every Spring! Thanks for visiting me today. :-)

asf said...

Ha! What a cute visitor.

Babzy said...

great capture ! It must have been a nice experience !

donna said...

Did you ask that red fox to please stand close to the gorgeous blue shed with the lush green growth in the background so that you'd get the perfect picture? Amazing photos and an even more amazing story. What's the large-leaf plant in the picture in front of the fox?

RainGardener said...

Linda those are great shots and I love the story that went with it. I'm glad to see you're (like me) well enough now to get some good pictures and do a post. Are we on the mend now?
I thought he looked like a young one too but then I don't know anything about foxes - 'cept the, you know, male kind and I'm waaaaay past that stage. LOL

Carolyn said...

These are beautiful photos of your new friend but do be careful. In Canada they are major carriers of rabies. While visiting my sister a month ago in Ontario "cottage country" she also had a fox who came to the front yard and would wait on a rock for scraps. If she waited too long she would move on and if she didn't get enough she would go catch her own ~ like a squirrel ~ which we witnessed and which reminded us that she is a wild animal.
Thank you for sharing these lovely photos though.

June said...

We just saw a fox too (photos on our blog of him eyeing our chickens). We thought him grand but dangerous to our rather adored fowl. Another gardener told me it's a good omen to see a fox. Must be even better luck to get him to accept a cookie!

Esther Montgomery said...

It is my first visit here and it turns out to be a very good post to arrive on.

Lovely pictures - both of the allotment and of the shed and of the fox.

A couple of years ago I had to stand guard over some children because a young fox wanted to get at their chips. At first we were charmed, then I got worried on their behalf. (Though not of rabies, I'm in Dorset, England.) In the end, I had to keep taking runs at it to keep it at a distance. Eventually, it wandered off - but we wondered whether its diet might become unhealthy (chips and chocolate chip cookies!) if it persisted like this.

None the less, we all found it a wonderful experience, as you did when you met your fox.

Esther Montgomery
Esther's Boring Garden Blog

lazyclick said...

Looks like you have captured every action of the visitor

Kris said...

Don't you somehow feel 'blessed' when a wild creature takes a moment to engage? Innocent encounters like these are really little wonders. So glad you were at tea and ready for guests... :-D

T and S said...

WOW, that's a surprising post, I didn't expect to see a wild fox.

WOW, it would have been an amazing experience.

Your images especially the 3rd one is beautiful Linda

Martha said...

A beautiful fox -- I'm sure it must get fed to be so tame. What a terrific experience.

Terry said...

What amazing photos.
I am so glad you were able to get these wonderful pictures.
What a beautiful animal.
I am wondering did the little fox once belong to someone ?
Or was he simply hungry and has learned the ways of begging human food ?
I am so glad all worked out for the photos ,but like everyone else I say do be careful.
Have a lovely week.

Barbara E said...

What a wonderful visitor! We get coyotes occasionally, and there are foxes in the foothills (I think) but I've never had one in my yard. We also get skunks - nice to look at but they have sprayed my dog twice and I prefer not!

Sue said...

The wildlife in our area, even the birds seem less afraid of us than they used to. I don't know if I like that, especially when it comes to squirrels. We've been putting food out in a feeder for them, and corn in a corn holder. Maybe we shouldn't be doing that, but our neighbor also gives them corn.

It sounds like your gardening is going well. It is starting to storm here, so I'll need to be getting off soon.

Take care,

Sylvana said...

What a cutie! Foxes are very smart creatures. I wouldn't doubt that it knew the meaning of "no more".
They are also quite daring creatures. They seem to have quite a bit of self confidence in their ability to handle a situation. No doubt that is what you were experiencing here.

He's a looker too! the only ones we get around here look like they just got into a brawl!