13. Fox Cubs (1)

Young fox cub with prey

It must have been about two years ago when I met my first fox and it was love at first sight.
I had always been fascinated by fairytale foxes, so well known for their slyness and intelligence.
I’d never have dreamt though, that a real fox could be even much more beautiful, social, creative and surprising than his fictitious version.

Since that day I immersed myself in fox behaviour.
I’ve seen them crawling, hugging, fighting, eating and hunting.
I admired them in their pretty winter fur and in their rumpled summer coat full of ticks.

cub red fox baby vulpes vulpes young Mother kid running
Running mother and little fox cub

Two summers ago, on one of my fox ‘hunts’, I stumbled upon a little fox cub.
The cub was very shy, the harsh  light ruined my photos, but…it sure was an unforgettable moment!
Of course I tried to find them at a better time, but the next day the foxes had moved. (Later on I learned that fox families tend to do that during the first weeks.)

cub red fox baby vulpes vulpes young vixen Mother nurturing caring cleaning
Mother fox cleaning fox cub

This encounter made a big impression and I decided to test my luck again this spring.
That turned out to be a little trickier than expected.
To put it shortly: I must have walked more than 200 miles, spent two full weeks in a train to get there and waited two very boring days staring at a (abandoned) fox den.

And then, on yet another ridiculously hot day, after another 20km of trudge, I plopped down on the grass, all sweaty, hungry, tired and pretty effing frustrated.
I just decided that it was about time to end this chance-less mission, when a white silhouette came walking towards me: The White Indian! (a remarkable person, always wearing white clothes and long white braided hair)
He friendly asked me how I was doing….

red fox cub baby vulpes vulpes young suckling drinking feeding
Suckling fox cub

Me: “Well….I’m completely fed up with these Foxes.
I’m trying so hard, but I just can’t find them.
And even when I almost found them,  I seem to loose them again..”

WI: “You know…..you’re just way too eager.”
Me: “Maybe, but how could I not be eager….?
This is my mission, these are my favourite animals, how can I not …?”

WI: And yet….you just have to let go…”
Me:Easier said than done, but I guess you’re right.
I ‘ve waisted so much time and energy: Enough is enough. I’m done. I give up. I ‘m letting go NOW!.

“Good”. The WI said.
“And you’ll see from the moment you let go, you will find exactly what you were looking for.

Me: “Yeah Right, in a Perfect World! ;)”

And -I’m not lying- at that precise moment, a vixen came running by.
The way she walked somehow triggered my last bit of energy.
“I put you on Hold White Indian, I’ve got one last fox thing to do….”
So I carefully followed the fox, expecting her to disappear in the prickly bushes to leave me behind like a fool who doesn’t know when to stop…

fox red fox baby youngster newborn suckling vulpes vulpes
A six week old fox cub

Just when I was about to joggle back,  I saw something red wriggling in the bushes.
So I moved a little closer and to my big surprise I found these three tiny cubs being suckled by the mother fox…d’awwwww!
Needless to say that my heart skipped some beats….so close, so beautiful…
A moment I will never forget.
I was too close to take a decent picture and in order not to disturb them I just made one photo and sneaked away from the den.
Outside stood a the White Indian, grinning like crazy: “I told you so… just let go …”

I went back one more time but realised that I wouldn’t be able to make photos without disturbing the family.
Photography is really important for me, but not all costs.

cub red fox baby vulpes vulpes young brother sister sibblings
Two Fox Cub siblings

So it took another month for me to visit them again,but….I found my fox family and I had the chance to witness them grow up to be the strong and healthy foxes they are today.

In the following posts I’d like to share these wonderful moment with you, please join me at my fox journey 😉
To be continued….

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10 thoughts on “13. Fox Cubs (1)

  1. wow… What a experience. Such are the true treasures of life.

    This blog most certainly is a treasure trove in enounters with our animal kin. And with your third eye or lense may be you capture it for all to see.

    Thank you for sharing.

  2. I just found your blog by way of 500px. This is an incredible story, and I love the lesson of the White Indian. We were having an animated discussion here after visiting the Snowy Owls in British Columbia. Those poor owls are literally stalked by aggressive photographers everyday. And, when I convened with my closest photographer friends, we all agreed that our best images derived from simply being in a moment … when the animals came to us. The chase may render a few good images but I think something is compromised in that process. Your post, your photos exemplify the concept of “being” with the animals, in a most beautiful way. I’m glad I found you! Cheers.

  3. i love meandering with the foxes when i read your stories over and over …. and your capturing them in their diverse moods– * big eyes* — what a treasure indeed. you are a gifted soul. i want to be like you when i grow up:-)))

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