Reynard Returns

Since buying our Littleton, Colorado, farm in 1990, red fox had been regular visitors (if not residents); indeed, for much of that time, an adult pair denned beneath our barn, raising a litter of pups each year.  While the property was littered with squirrel limbs, fish heads and goose bones, these carnivores controlled our mice and voles and were always welcome on the farm.

Then, a few years ago, a pair of coyotes invaded our small refuge, evicting the resident fox and killing others that wandered onto the property; they even used the old fox den to raise a litter of their own.  Fortunately, we were able to encourage their departure and closed off the denning site to discourage their return.  While these efforts were successful, fox and deer did not return to the farm but we have observed a pair of cottontails, long displaced by the fox and coyotes.

This morning, I looked out the kitchen window to find a young red fox chasing a squirrel from beneath our bird feeders; the agile prey was able to escape up a tree and the fox sauntered on to explore the pasture.  It's good to know that Reynard has returned to our property though the cottontails may not agree!