March 13, 2012

THE STORY OF A LITTLE FOX NAMED JAR HEAD.

ONE DAY A SMALL GRAY FOX PERCHED HERSELF ON A DOWNED TREE BEHIND MY HOME.

FOR TWO DAYS SHE SAT ON  THE TREE NO MATTER WHAT TIME OF DAY IT WAS. SHE WAS A VERY PATIENT FOX AND HAD SOMETHING ON HER MIND...


ON THE 2ND DAY i STOOD IN FRONT OF HER AND OUR EYES MET. SO I ASKED HER POINT BLANK " LITTLE FOX" WHY ARE YOU HERE AND  JUST WHAT CAN I DO FOR YOU?


THEN A FEW MOMENTS LATER I CAUGHT SOMETHING OUT OF THE CORNER OF MY EYE MOVING AROUND IN THE GRASS.

AT FIRST I THOUGHT IT WAS AN ARMADILLO BECAUSE OF THE AWKWARDNESS OF IT'S MOVEMENT BUT ON CLOSER OBSERVATION I NOTICED IT WAS A LITTLE BABY FOX ....WITH A JAR ON IT'S HEAD!

 OMG I thought out loud and  my heart sank.I could hardly believe my own eyes! He looked like a space fox ready for take off and begin to think how can I help this wild little critter get that jar off his head. However the bigger problem was just  HOW was I going to catch him!

IT BECAME CLEAR to me at that point THAT THE MOTHER FOX HAD BEEN ASKING FOR INTERVENTION FOR HER KIT AS THERE WAS NO WAY SHE COULD HELP HIM HERSELF. AS ELUSIVE AND SHY AS FOX ARE, SHE PUT HERSELF, IN BROAD DAYLIGHT , TWENTY FEET FROM MY BACK DOOR, TO SUMMON THE HELP SHE NEEDED FROM A HUMAN BEING...WITH HANDS!



TO MAKE A LONG STORY SHORT LITTLE JAR HEAD WAS RESCUED THE NEXT DAY WITH THE HELP OF SOME ANIMAL LOVING NEIGHBORS, AND AN AMAZING MAN WHO HAD NO FEAR OF FOXES...


It was a plastic jar so we were lucky that we could cut it off with a pair of scissors.
Though it was July and I am sure that little guy had been in trouble for a couple of days
He appeared to be healthy and  calm.   Frank the man who caught him held him while I cut the jar off his head head. 

He was so cute. After the jar was removed I petted his head a few times noticing how beautiful his gray coat was, Then Frank carried him outside and let him go back to his mother.  It was a happy moment for all.



The next morning I saw the mother for running across the yard with a bird it her mouth and I knew it was for little jar head.


SO BEGAN MY WONDERFUL ADVENTURE WITH THE GRAY FOXES WHO
TAUGHT ME MANY THINGS
THEY LIVED AND GREWW UP IN MY BACK YARD AND THEY SEEMED TO THINK OF MY AS PART OF THEIR ENVIRONMENT.






THE BEAUTIFUL LANGUAGE OF FOXES

This is one of my favorite videos that I took in Aug 2010. The kits were almost grown and soon after this slowly but surely all the foxes disapeared. I put food and water out every day but they did not come back. I was so hoping to have a third litter on the property in 2011. However, because of the dry weather that year the foxes went away to find a better place to live.
Unfortunatly for myself, I too had to move from Micanopy in Jan. 20112.  Right before I left, I saw freshly dug fox holes all around the property. Some of the holes no more than 30 feet from the house.  The hardest part of having to move was that I would never get to see the foxes again. I am settled in New Orleans but I honestly still think about the foxes everyday.
Two weeks ago, around Feb. 15th my neighbor Lynn, in Micanopy, told me that her neighbor saw a fox on his property around his chicken coup... however, he said that he did not mind loosing a couple of chickens to the foxes.... so everyone who has learned about the Jar Head story sees foxes in a new and accepting light. This makes me happy.
Please go back to older post to see more videos that I took in 2010. 
Thanks for reading my blog. I still want to hear from anyone that has a fox story themselves!
Sandra



Today's video is my all time favorite. There are moments in this video when the adult foxes move in complete tandem with one another as though it was a beautifully  choreographed  dance and they were responding on cue! .
 You can see them communicating with one another in a silent language only they understand. You can't help but notice it. In my opinion it is simply breadth taking and fills my heart with an incredible sense of joy and emotion you want to hang onto but can't.  Those moments are rare and special so I must say I have watched this particular video over and over when I need a little boost of joy to my day.

  There are all kinds of activities going on in the tree line where the young foxes hold back as long as they can.  Shyanne the grandma of the group plays the game with the young foxes where she gets a piece of food in her mouth and teases them with it.
I have watched them do this over and over and the intention of the adult foX is for the
little fox to win.  At one point in this video you will see Shyanne teasing  a little fox  and once she drops the food for the little one to get, she goes over with another piece and drops it at the little foxes feet, making sure she got her share.

The music I have chosen for this video couldn't have been better as the tempo and the
spiritual quality of the music matches that of the beautiful gray foxes.
I would like to recommend that you watch this in full screen if your computer allows and also watch it more than once. After a youtube plays a lot of little videos to choose from shows up at the bottom. Please ignore this as all of those videos are not mine and might not be friendly to foxes.  Stay on this page and go to the next blog post below to play that video. Thanks for for visiting my Micanopy Fox Blog and come back soon.
Sandra

November 7, 2011

Good News

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Hello Fox Watchers.
Well, it has been a lonely year without any foxes to marvel over.
However, walking around the 10 acres I live on in Florida, I am seeing brand new
freshly dug fox holes!
This makes me happy.
I haven't seen a fox yet but I put out a little food at night by the biggest fox hole  and in the morning all the food is gone!
Now, yes it could be another animal but I have also spotted some fox scat... yeah that is a good sign to me that it is a fox.
Winter is a time for breeding. My guess it is one of my clan that has come home to rooster, as they say.
I will keep you posted on the fox watch in Micanopy Florida.
If you have time please read my Fox story about the little fox that got a jar stuck on his head. You will really enjoy it.

May 10, 2011

Fox Lesson #4 Keep Moving

May 10th 2011
Hi Fellow earth travelers. 
. I haven't seen the fox this week. I have been riding and walking every morning
though hoping to run across her again. She was so beautiful. She reminded me of my grandmother gray fox, Shyanne. Shyanne was clearly an older and more wiser fox. This red fox had the same look as Shyanne did.  A noble fox. A wise fox. A mother.  
Actually, my obsesion to see a fox has driven me to walking and riding my bike over many miles so I am getting healthy like the lean fox who never over eats or stops moving.
Below are some of my  Back Roads in Central Florida PHotos




May 2, 2011

Fox Lesson # 3 GET UP BEFORE THE SUN RISES

Hello Nature and fox watchers
Foxes know that the morning is the best time of day.
They know that is when the "getting" is good. They run around free of fear of humans or cars and that food is easy to obtain. They know that the best time of day is before the sun rises.
When I wake before the sun rises I put on my shoes and dash out the door. I know that whatever happens in the next hour will always be a treat. It doesn't matter if you live in the country or the city or somewhere in between, the sun will rise over the horizon casting a beautiful glow over everything it encounters.  The noise of cars and  humans sounds is non existant and you will hear the birds singing like never before.What a show and just for you and admission is free!
Foxes travel on the same paths over and over as you can spot a fox path by the beaten down grass about 6 inches wide.  The deeper the path, the longer they have been using it. It says, I feel safe here and I know my way around....Like the fox, I have been traveling the same path to Evinston every morning and every morning I am greeted with the same excitement as the day before just like a fox whose travels are many but paths are few for every day is different from the one before. It's all good before sunrise!
Evinston, Florida May 1, 2011 "It is all good before Sunrise" photograph by Sandra Lynn Russell

May 1, 2011

Fox lesson #2 Stop looking and you shall find

Hi Fox Watchers
Did I tell you that I thought my gray  foxes were living on the other side of the hwy from me?
Well a couple of weeks ago, I saw, from a distance, a fox crossing the road in front of me.. but it was too far away to tell what it looked like..
So I have been riding my bike or walking every morning in hopes of seeing it again.

Well, yesterday, April 30th,   I said to myself that you never find something you are looking for  until you stop looking for it and decided  that the only way to see a fox again was to stop looking for one!
 In fact, I was chatting with a Local  woman, named Ann, in the little town of Evinston, Florida, where I ride my bike to, and she said she had not seen any foxes lately. I also heard several people tell me they had to shoot a fox because it was acting strangely and either had  rabies or distemper.  This made me sad and I began to wonder about my own fox clan and the fox I had seen this spring.
People around here like foxes and would not shoot one unless it was sick.

Anyway, yesterday I had been walking for almost 3 hours ..about 4 miles, taking photos and chatting with people along my way. It was about 11 am as I walked home and the sun was high and hot. I stopped to rest a minute actually thinking I couldn't make it up the next hill and was walking very slowly, not looking for a fox at all, just too darn tired to pick up one foot and put it in front of the other slowing my pace.

About that time I looked up to discern just how much farther I had to go and there to my amazement  was a  red fox prancing across the road about 20 feet in front of me!
It was clearly a red fox and not one of mine. Though I was thrilled to see a fox at all, I was also disappointed that it was not a gray fox. I was not able to get my camera turned on in time to take it's photo but I took one in my head and decided it was a good day even though the fox was not my clan.

That was Saturday.

This morning, Sunday, I took off on my bike at 6 am and road on past where I had seen the fox the day before, and pursued my goal of getting to the cow pasture before sunrise hoping to get some interesting shots. On my way back, I decided to wait awhile by the road where Red Fox was crossing yesterday.
However, no fox. But instead of going home I decided to ride a little while longer down a dirt road I had not explored yet and come back to that spot around 10.
When I got to that spot I leaned my bike against a tree so I could handle my camera. I watched the road for a few minutes but didn't see a fox there.
 However, I just had a feeling that a fox was near. So I switched my viewing and  I looked down the dirt road, adjacent to the main road, towards an abandoned  house that I have been photographing.  I knew I had seen some fox tracks in the sandy dirt road a few days before.

Low and behold, right down that road was the same beautiful red fox I saw yesterday. It was just walking through the grass in front of the old house!
Wow, How lucky and excited  I was...so I fumbled with my camera and got a few shots of her.
When the fox became aware of me it turned around and started walking up the dirt road towards me and I took the photo below.
However, it kept coming right at me, non threatening but all the same, with the rabid storiesI had heard about  I decided to just say "no, no" .and gently put my hand up and it turned right around and disappeared into the woods.
It was approaching me in a friendly manner, like a dog would do but still... it was probably best that I just snapped the one photo....instead of letting it get closer....of course, I have to wonder, if I had not scared it away, what would have happened... maybe it would have come up to me and licked my hand......  well, probably not....
Below are the photos from today.

This is the abandoned house where I saw the Red Fox. It is a perfect place of a fox to have a litter of kits!
I fumble to get my camera focused but this is the best I could do.
I am sure she or he was going to this house where their kits probably were born.
This is Red, walk right towards me about 50 feet away.
Part of me wishes I had just let her keep approaching but
my first instinct was Better not....yet anyway.

April 24, 2011

FOX LESSON #1 SING YOUR OWN SONG


Hi Fox watchers,
As I mentioned my foxes have found a new place to bring up their young this year.
I have been walking every morning to the place were I saw them last week but have not been fortunate enough to see them again. I am sure they are busy keeping their young ones fed and happy as foxes are very good parents. I should know as I was able to watch two litters of kits grow up with loving parents. If you have not watched my fox videos from past blogs please do. If you are pressed for time, watch the one I called "The Language Of Foxes" as it shows you just how communal and loving foxes are towards one another. The kits are about 6 months old in this video.
The other one I took of the first litter when the mother fox came and asked me to help her get a jar off the head of one of her kits (http://www.zazzle.com/thegrayfox)
This video is of the mother fox giving her kits one last meal. It is called "The Good Mother"

Even though my foxes are not right in my back yard they are and always will be in my heart. I learned a lot from those foxes and they opened my eyes to all the nature and beautiful things around me.
I will still be looking for foxes but I will be uploading videos and photos now of the things I encounter while looking for them.
I contribute my new view of life to the foxes and I will be expanding on the lessons I have learned from them.
Today's video is Fox Lesson #1 and it is called "Sing your own song" and it is a happy little Wren just singing away loud and with enthusiasm.
In a world where so many people want to be just like everyone else I say rubbish.
We all have our own song and that song should be sung with the enthusiasm of this little bird! Throw away the concept of what society thinks you should be and just be who you are. Your life and the world will be better off for it.