• Mike Curtis

Sam Fox, White Tip and Broken Tail


Above: Sam Fox enjoying a little taste of honey.

It's been a couple of fascinating days with the Cambridge foxes. On Monday we had Sam and White Tip together in the field. Both were very confident and it's quite evident that these two are mates. Alas I was without camera, so White Tip eludes me again.

Today was really interesting as Broken Tail was the first to appear in the snow. I'm still not sure of Broken Tail's gender but it was behaving in a very nervous manner, circling the sites where I bury some treats but always backing away after getting close. It was too skittish to open the window to attempt a photograph, so I decided not to disturb it.

I'm pretty sure it was smelling the scent of Sam Fox and backing away. It's been very noticeable that Sam Fox, who is very bold and clearly the territory holder, scent marks the area, specifically the edges of the holes in which the morsels of food are left. She marks both with urine and faeces. I've read that foxes will often defecate at the entrances to Rabbit burrows in their territory, so I wonder if this is another example of the dominant vixen marking out its food source?

As for Broken Tail, well I'm wondering if it is a young male fox. It's clearly quite respectful of the territorial marking left by Sam Fox. I look forward to picking up a few more clues as to the relationship of Broken Tail to Sam Fox and White Tip.

In the picture below, Sam Fox defecates on the edge of her "food stash"

#redfox

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