where the wild things are . . .

Mrs Fox and her three cubs
The bottom of my garden is where the wild things live. I'd like to tell you that it's because I have created a wild garden to give the local fauna a bit of a feeding playground. In my heart of hearts, I really want to believe that that it might be hiding a few wild fairies too, but the truth is that I don't particularly like manicured gardens and I am something of a lazy gardener. 

Mrs Fox and her three cubs

A few days ago, I was in the kitchen cooking. Naturally. I sensed some movement from the corner of my eye and went over to the backdoor, which has a window in it that looks out over the back garden.  To my delight, I saw not one, not two, not three, but four foxes gambolling at the bottom of the garden.

Mrs Fox and her three cubs
There has been quite some debate over the past few years in London about urban foxes - whether they are a menace or not. I suspect that the problem is not the foxes but people. 

The foxes have moved into urban areas because of us humans. If we didn't leave so much rubbish, litter and edibles around, the foxes wouldn't be here. Changes in agricultural practices over a century haven't helped either. When their habitat changed, foxes move to where they could get food.

There are stories of foxes coming into people's houses and attacking babies and small children; of foxes who are killing pet cats. If it was your child that was bitten or your pet that was killed, then I can understand why you would loathe foxes and you have my sympathy. 

Mrs Fox and her three cubs
However, in my experience, the local cats go out mob-handed and the foxes skedaddle. Even my elderly agoraphobic cat only has to twitch her whiskers and the foxes are off like a shot. It is a fact of life that urban foxes are here to stay and I have to say that watching them play in my back garden was an absolute pleasure.

Apologies for the quality of the photographs - I have only just got to grips with food photography, which by and large tends to be close-ups and the subject doesn't move much! I photographed these foxes through a grubby kitchen window at quite some distance, but I hope you get some idea of why I was so enchanted.

I loved watching them so much that for 30 minutes or so I videoed them until my arms got tired! I have a lovely little film clip too but unfortunately haven't been able to upload it - damn!  

foxes at play!

Mrs Fox

gracious Mrs Fox

I shall try to upload the film clip later. It was a very blustery day - more like spring than early summer, but the foxes seemed to enjoy it. My favourite bit is where one of the cubs runs off towards the back of the garden, Then its back legs seem to give way and it plonks itself down, a bit like Eeyore and sticks its snout into the wind, enjoying the breeze. Absolute joy!


Anonymous said...

I agree. One of the pleasures of visiting my son and his wife in London is the chance to watch those foxes from the middle of the night from an upstairs window as they stroll down the street. Thanks for this post - even without any recipe ideas.

Liz Thomas said...

Well, just be thankful that goose in the picture was not a real one.

My sister lives in the countryside in Anglesey and they have problems with foxes (Anglesey used to naturally fox free until some idiot brought in some cubs as pets and now they are a menace). Had my brother in law seen these "cute" creatures he would have been out with his gun in a trice. They have often lost chickens to foxes who don't just kill for food, they make a sport of it.