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Red Fox and Cottontail

Posted on May 13, 2016

It is terribly ironic that just hours after my colleague, Audubon Connecticut Director of Bird Conservation Patrick Comins, uploaded some lovely cottontail photos to the Audubon Connecticut at Stratford Point page that I found our vixen Red Fox engaged in some hunting early this morning. I felt some eyes on me as I surveyed for avian migrants along Prospect Drive, and she was watching me from within our side of the fence.

Red Fox vixen Eastern Cottontail prey-2508

This is nothing abnormal, and the interaction was typical – a little curious stare down at one another before we both continue on. However, she then put her attention to the ground and hopped around a bit while grabbing something. She was positioning a young cottontail in her mouth before running off with it.

Red Fox vixen Eastern Cottontail prey-2510

Red Fox vixen Eastern Cottontail prey-2512

Red Fox vixen Eastern Cottontail prey-2515

Once she had a good grip she moved away from me and back towards the den at a good jog. She sped up and got into a run once she knew that I had seen her with prey, probably hoping I wouldn’t steal it. I ran towards our driveway to take a picture of her cutting across it in the open but she was a blur by that point. It might not look all that pleasant but it is nature and the food web in action.

Scott Kruitbosch
Conservation & Outreach Coordinator