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Monday, March 19, 2018

Fox in a Bear Den with Sow and Cubs

Almost exactly two years ago, a red fox went halfway into a bear den that contained a sow and two tiny cubs.

This was the arrival of the red fox at the den. The den entrance is triangular in the far right of the photo.

Then, the fox started to go in!

This was the furthest into the den that he ever was. You can see his tail and butt - and that's all. The cave is not huge so I'm guessing that he was face to face with the sow.

I was terrified that the fox would back out of the den with a cub in his mouth but he didn't. He backed away and then stood stock still, thinking. Soon thereafter, he departed.
Of course, I don't know what happened inside the den because there was no cam in there. However, based on the observations of others, I'm betting that the sow literally lay on top of her cubs so the fox would have to go through her to get to them.

Thank goodness that they both survived the fox's visit. Here's a photo of the family from later in the spring of 2016. Seeing the love of the sow for her cubs is breath-taking.

I have the fox's visit in a video. You can watch the video here or at Youtube.
I don't know where the cubs ended up. The black one was a male so he should have left our area by now looking for a home range of his own. The brown one was a female so she likely claimed a fringe area of her mother's range as her own. My trail cams haven't seen her but she could easily be living outside the area where I have cams.

Because sows have cubs every two years, this sow should be escorting cubs around our area this spring!

Happy Wildlife Monday!


  1. not a very sensible fox, he could have had his head slapped off. so glad the cubs survived. i could hear them in the video...

  2. That fox is pushing it's luck just a bit!

  3. Whew talk about an uninvited guest!! Hikes...
    Hugs madi and mom

  4. Hari OM
    I too was thinking the fox was either very brave - or a total nitwit! YAM xx

  5. That is one very bold fox! He could have been lunch for mama and her cubs!

  6. That fox was brave.And this year, I wonder what will be in that den once again.

  7. First the fox was very cautious, then very brave, and finally very wise:) We hope you find some cute cubs to show us again this year.

  8. Now that is super interesting. What a gutsy fox!

  9. Now we understand where the saying, "Crazy as a Fox" comes from. :-). Very cool footage!!

  10. Wow, we had no idea a fox would chance messing with a bear
    Hazel & Mabel

  11. OMD, that was amazin'! That fox has got balls man! The cubs are just too adorables! and noooooisy! heheheee
    Ruby ♥

  12. It looks like she had her paws full with those two! :) That fox went in further than I thought it might, I'd say he was lucky to be able to back out. He looked like he was considering trying again for a minute there...guess he made the wise choice in the end!

  13. That was a very wise fox!


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