I have to tell you that at this time of year my bird feeder is about the most exciting thing going on around here. When Bruce’s mother, Justine, was writing her weekly newspaper column, this was when she would call pleadingly to say, “Have you got any news for the fish wrapper?” I thought about her today.
Saturday night we had an unexpected visitor to the feeder. As we were eating dinner a beautiful red fox came in. She walked down the steps as relaxed as could be. Coming around the corner, a squirrel caught her eye and the chase was on. The squirrel won.
Then the fox returned to help herself to some scraps of food that I had put out. I am trying to clean out my freezer and a few things have been in there too long. The theory is that it is better to feed the fox than fill the dumpster. At any rate the fox picked up a couple pieces, walked off to eat them and then came back for more. Freezer burned ham tasted pretty good to her.
The thing that amazes Bruce and I is how bold the fox is. We are sitting in a fully lighted kitchen with the window not 10 feet from the fox. She doesn’t seem to care about us at all. I wonder if the glare from the glass makes it difficult to see us.
All summer long we have been seeing fox on the Gunflint Trail. During the summer they all look scrawny and very, very thin. Well, partridge hunting has been particularly good this year and the fox must be getting their share. Just like our fox at the window, suddenly they are all beautiful. They’re fat, the fur is thick, and their tails are as full as can be.
Recently I was talking with a group of neighbors. They all had stories to tell about seeing animals. Tom and Melissa have several “pet” partridge on their road. Bruce doesn’t hunt there. Margit saw a pair of pileated woodpeckers on a walk. She was able to see where their nest was. Someone else has been seeing fox too.
We are blessed to live in a very special part of the country. Anyone who lives here can observe the local animals just as we do. It is a wonderful addition to the rhythm of our lives.