At an abandoned camper down the road from ours, there are six baby foxes living beneath the porch. For some reason Rupert is oblivious to them....I guess he feels no threat from them, thankfully. The mama fox runs from us the minute she catches sight of us. Not the babies......they peek out at us as soon as we walk by or they stroll leisurely across the porch while we watch from across the road, stretching in the sun and looking over at us, no fear at all. They romp in the leaves and climb on the wood pile....it's such fun to watch them!
While watching them through the binoculars, the mama returned. I actually took a couple of steps back when she came into view. She demands attention. And I swear she glared at me, protecting her brood, even though she turned and fled once she heard me in the woods.
And I thought again about that whole nature vs. nurture argument.....here were those baby foxes not yet afraid of humans or dogs, yet the mama has definitely had unhappy encounters. She's teaching them already to be afraid of us just by her actions.
The campground owners have put coyote scent around the abandoned camper. This, according to the DEC, is supposed to drive this fox family away. It doesn't seem to be working....which is fine by us, as we are enjoying watching their antics. I imagine that once the more boisterous, beer drinking yahoos arrive at the campground, even the babies will decide that some humans are better off avoiding and follow their mama deeper into woods. Until then, we'll enjoy watching them though. Hubby is hoping to get some pictures this weekend. We'll keep you posted.