A red fox family takes residence in my garden most years. They live in burrows in a raised bank near my house. This year, a bumper crop of two adults and seven cubs has settled in. Watching the cubs play on the lawn in the sunshine is a privilege, and I find it hard to believe that some of my neighbours would like them “removed”.
The season usually starts in winter, with night cries in the back garden. Then, in late winter / early spring, the night time squealing of cubs begins — presumably the safest time to bring all of the fox family out at once. Once May begins, I know it’s only a matter of days before the cubs are big enough to come out in daylight, and I get to watch the next generation play in the morning sun.
Red fox cubs get very excited when they are first chaperoned in the wide world. They get even more excited when they are let loose completely — with a watchful eye, of course.
Fox cubs love to play with each other and their parents. They like to chase and fight each other most of all. Occasionally, they will take a break to explore their surroundings.
You’ve got to feel sorry for the maternal vixen. Not only does she have to do most of the child-raising, she seems to put herself through a lot of stress, as she takes her cubs out for play in the sun. Here, a cub tries to get food, while mum keeps an eye on its siblings.