Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Red Foxes (20150601) What a bounty of foxes!

Sheesh, as I finished of the prevous post I commented how it would always be nice to have more red foxes on the blog. Well the old adage "be careful what you wish for" came into play today. I had been watching the Alberta Wildlife Facebook page while in Nova Scotia and was envious of the folks getting great red fox images. So when I returned for the packing task I just had to get our and see these beauties for myself. Once again it was Tim and I that hit the road down towards Nanton to spend some time with these photogenic critters.
We arrived at our first "viewing area" around 6;00 p.m. the light was terrible with dark overcast skies threatening rain. We spotted our first subject about 20 minutes later. It tood another 20 minutes before a second kit showed up.
 While the time seemed to pass slowly there were a couple of diversions, which are always welcome when on a stake out.
Red-winged Blackbirds always make interesting subjects. The nest was obviously very close by so Mom and Dad were pretty active.
Tim suggest that we take a look at "viewing area" number 2 perhaps there would be  little more going on at the second local den. The shift took us about 15 minutes but we had more activity immediately.
These three siblings seemed to have no limit of energy, stopping only occasionally to make certain all was good, and nothing was in the wrong spot.
They practiced their "wrassling" constantly.
Then a fourth sibling appeared. The light was continuing to disappear and I had to increase my ISO to 2000. Of course, observing and stalking, are important skills to practice on a constant basis as well.
It is a reall challenge to try and shoot this many moving subjects at one time. Getting them all in one frame is a victory, but they are never all in the range of the depth of field so there are always one or two out of focus.
Observing, stalking, chasing, wrestling, what else does a young fox have to practice every day?
Oh, there is one more critical skill, and that is the "pounce"!
It was a real challenge to try and follow these critters and their antics. You never knew where to look or focus as there was activity all around all the time. Tim suggested that we go back to the first den and see if there was any more activity going on over there. So we went over knowing that we would be losing light.
What we found was 5 kits doing exactly the same thing the other 4 had been doing. Pouncing, chasing, watching, wrestling, and stalking. The life of a kid. What a great evening! As the old saying goes: "it never rains, it pours". this makes 10 red foxes in the last 26 hours, a pretty phenominal couple of days.
Well that certainly fills in the red fox holes of the blog for a while. I hope you enjoyed the images just 1/1000 as much as I did taking them. What a pleasure. This week don't delay, put a little "wild" in your life!  Turbo

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