Light of Morn
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Trail Encounter
10:30AM, 3 July 2008
Near the Mayfair Ranch / Longwall Cyn Trail junction.
This gray fox and her kit were unaware of my presence.
Then she heard the click, click, click of my camera's lens shutter.
And immediately decided to investigate.
I could hear her growl as she loped towards me.
She came steadily onward showing no fear.
Her kit joined her, but I don't think it was fully aware of me.
She, on the otherhand, kept her eyes fixed on me.
She paused briefly as she drew near. By now, she'd quit growling.
But then continued coming towards me.
At this point she and her kit were about 20-feet away.
Notice her ragged ear tips and eyes of different sizes?
I think she's blind in one eye, possibly due to fights with prey or other predators.
She stood staring at me for maybe a minute.
Then returned back along the trail from where she'd come.
She took one last backwards glance at me before leaving the trail.
But she didn't go far. Just off trail, she and her kit rested in shade.
She sat watching me as I passed by on the trail below.
The kit left the shade and a short ways up the hill disappeared into the brush.
She turned slightly to watch me as I passed.
Not wanting to stress her by trying to get closer, I took this final photo before walking away.
Greatest threat to gray foxes is loss of habitat, urbanization.
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