Looks Promising

Things are looking promising for the fox family to den under our barn this year.

I’d been working in the yard this afternoon and sat down to rest. Orange movement in the shrubby corner of the back corner of our 2-acre yard caught my attention. About the same time my presence caught its attention. It went back the way it came. At first it looked like a cat we have in the neighborhood.

It wasn’t long before it headed back toward the barn under more shrubby cover.

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The pair raised 4 kits in their den under our barn last summer. With them being so aware and on alert at all times, I had to take all my pictures through the picture window in my computer room. They would even see me in the house.

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Three were nursing here and the other one … maybe it was already full.

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I couldn’t fool them, even when in the house. She came to the water garden for a drink and let me know she knew I was watching her.

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Buffy knew they were under there,

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and wanted me to help get them out of her territory.


I took pictures of the family from May 9-24 last year.  According to my Mammals of Illinois book, foxes breed late January and in February.  Gestation period is 51 days, and the young are born in late March or in April. Since we live in southern Illinois, I figure they breed toward the end of March.

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  I sat down at the computer yesterday afternoon, looked out the window and there was a fox coming up from the back corner of our yard! I managed, in all my excitement, to get 3 pictures. It’s cautious actions before going under the barn let me know it sensed me.

8 responses to this post.

  1. I hope you have another litter of little ones to photograph & share with us through the season! This is so neat to watch and experience. Our past home we had a groundhog family living under our large shed. Your photos of Buffy at the barn fondly reminded me of Shadow keeping guard on his groundhogs’ two entries. He soooo wanted them off his property so I can’t blame Buffy for feeling the same way! 🙂


    • We’ve had groundhogs come and go, but not denning. The foxes can also come through a lot of young woody growth to get under the back of the barn. I don’t expect to see much until the young come out to play… I can’t wait.


  2. I so hope they have a litter of fox babies, so you can take pictures and share their stories with us!!


    • You wouldn’t believe how many times a day I look out the window! I know they’re under there by the way Buffy acts. I will definitely keep every one up on any developments.


  3. Very cool..:-)


  4. I’m surprised they come into the yard with your dog there.


    • We live on the highway and Buffy’s a house dog. There’s a thick behind the barn and a hole in our neighbor’s fence. So they can come in and under the house without my seeing them from the window. We didn’t know they were here last year until the young started playing in the yard. Of course I don’t know when they came last year.


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