Wildlife attraction

A magnificent raven flew down and grabbed itself a nice meal….

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The first visitor was a wary dog fox.  It walked all around the bait but was too suspicious to have a go at the free meal.

In the early hours, just as it was getting light, some crows and magpies came down to pick the bones.  There was some interesting interplay between the two species with the crows appearing to have the upper hand.

Later in the morning after the sun had risen, a magpie returned but was completely dwarfed by a magnificent raven which came down a short time later and flew away with a nice meal.

So in just a few hours we had attracted three Corvid species and seen some interesting behaviour.

An Experiment

We put out some bait to see what wildlife would be visiting…

A couple of months ago my son and I thought we’d try an experiment to find out a little more about the wildlife visiting our garden.  So rather than put it in the recycling as we normally would, we used the chicken carcass from our Sunday roast to bait the area directly in front of my wildlife camera.  The experiment proved to be a great success.

First on the scene was a crow.  It made off with a big chunk of meat and came back a few more times before the light faded.

When it was fully dark, the next on the scene was a fully-grown dog fox.  It was very cautious and took its time to check out this unexpected windfall before finally taking the plunge and grabbing the prize.

We thought that would have been the end of the action now that the chicken carcass had been taken.  But we were wrong.  Amazingly, our old friend Limpy, the female fox with an injured foreleg turned up and checked out the spot where the food had been.  We had not seen her for around 10 months.  She had survived the winter and looked in really great condition.  In fact she looked like she had been suckling young.  That would be fantastic if she had succeeded in raising a family.

We left the camera out for the next few weeks checking it for recordings every week or so.  After another month we were excited to see a young fox cub foraging in front of the camera.  Could this have been one of Limpy’s cubs?  Actually, there’s a very good chance that it is one of Limpy’s offspring.  This is because foxes are very territorial and with the previous recordings showing the visits of the dog fox and Limpy occurring within a few minutes of each other, this probably means that they are a pair and the cub is theirs!

Even more foxes!

Just look at the way the dog fox poses for the camera..

Just a few hours after our regular visitor, Limpy, showed up in the garden we were visited by two more foxes.  A dog and a vixen in great condition – Just look at the way the dog fox poses for the camera!

Even though this is the time of year when foxes are pairing up and mating, I don’t think these are a breeding pair.  They still look rather young and have very similar markings.  So I think they’re siblings from last year’s litter from a den in the woods across the field from our house.  It could also be possible that Limpy is their sister because all three foxes are occupying the same territory and must come across one another on a regular basis.  Clearly all three foxes appear to be tolerating each other without conflict.

Our friend has returned

She’s still able to find sufficient food to survive…

I can’t tell you how happy I felt when I checked the memory card in my camera trap and discovered that the disabled fox which visited my garden back in June had once again returned to forage for food.  “Limpy” as I had christened her looked thinner than she was in June.  Thankfully she still appeared to be in reasonable condition and able to find sufficient food to survive.  It’s the beginning of September now and there’s probably lots of food about at the moment.  However, I think times will become more difficult for Limpy in the coming autumn and winter months.  I’ll keep a watch out to see how she gets on.

Disabled Fox

I do hope she manages to survive to adulthood…

For several weeks we’ve been visited in the garden by a young fox with a pronounced limp.  She (I think it’s a vixen) has an injured or deformed front leg which she holds off the ground and hops on three legs.   I recorded this video back in June this year, and so far she appears to be able to find enough to eat to stay healthy.  It looks like she is probably limited to feeding on insects and earthworms.  Maybe she can occasionally catch small mammals.  I do hope she manages to survive to adulthood.  I’ll keep a watch out to see how she fares.

Interesting Fox behaviour

..the fox knew there was a badger close by..

This was some interesting behaviour shown by a Fox which I caught on my camera trap.  It is captured in infrared on a very dark night.  Clearly, the Fox knew there was a Badger close by and did not want to risk revealing it’s presence.  It waited patiently for the Badger to pass by before moving on.