Sunday, March 21, 2010

More Wildlife On The Trails

Springtime's just around the corner! I took this panorama last Spring. It is a huge male mulberry tree (its umbrella spans more than 75 feet) that stands at the entrance to the trails I run daily.

I had just run down the side of the ridge. All along the top of the ridge I had been mentally noting how multiple, how tame, and how slow the squirrels were as they just barely ran out of my path. It was one of those rare times -- I was running without one of the dogs.

I reached the bottom of the hill, hopped over the new artesian spring that had been leaking across the trail, and noted (just barely) another big squirrel not getting out of my way.


That wasn't a squirrel.

My mind is so quick, my powers of observation so keen that I had barely gotten 20 yards further down the trail when my brain registered what my eyes had just seen. (Truth is, I think in longhand cursive. It's slow and I often run out of ink).

I backed up the 20 yards and, sure enough, there was one of the coolest sights I've ever been privileged to witness in nature....

Two fox kits so engrossed in wrestling with each other -- their necks a black shiny mess of each other's saliva from the open-mouthed biting, slobbery play -- that I stood over them watching for probably five minutes. They never did spook off or even show any recognition of my presence. I finally ran off, leaving them still engrossed in their play.

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