A Nice WRI Surprise - UPDATE November 17, 2018

We never mentioned the WRI to anyone for GiveMN, and I never checked how the WRI site was doing on GiveMN. Today, I got an encouraging surprise.Gray foxGray fox Twenty-seven donors had sleuthed it out on their own and donated over $1,500 that we’ll use for bear food—and maybe a little fox food. Some of these donors are friends from Black Bear Field Study Courses. Others were caring people I haven’t had the pleasure to meet yet. Two were anonymous. It gave me a good feeling to see that support. We’re all in this together. Thank you!

I saw a question about what to feed foxes and have to admit that I don’t know a lot of about that. The question is about feeding chicken that has been cooked, which makes the bones more brittle and more likely to break and stick in the fox’s throat. I don’t want to do that. I’m glad the fox that ate the cooked drumsticks keeps coming back.

Today, someone sent me this link about feeding foxes: http://www.thefoxwebsite.net/WL_FOXUK_part2_FINAL_rev1.pdf It says:

For eggs, it says, “Raw or boiled.”

For savory foods, it says, “Foxes like cheese, peanuts and birdseed – so much so that they often jump up to knock down birdfeeders.” Yes, the fox here does eat sunflower seeds, but when I dumped a container of ricotta cheese after reading this, the fox came and didn’t touch it.

For dog food, it says, “The bonus is that cats tend to ignore it. Cats also usually ignore sandwiches filled with jam, honey or peanut butter, but foxes love these.” I hadn’t thought of dog food.

For meat and bones, it says, “The meat can be fresh, cooked or tinned, and the bones can be raw or cooked. Despite the stories, it is OK to feed foxes chicken bones.” That made me wonder if the author really knows, considering how often I’ve heard not to feed dogs chicken bones. But the website is from a group that supposedly specializes in feeding foxes. I guess I thought that dogs had lost some ability to handle chicken bones and that wild foxes had no problem because I’ve always heard of “The fox in the hen house.” It sounds like bologna is okay, although chicken is cheaper when it’s on sale for 39 cents a pound. I could cook chicken and remove the bones, but that sounds time-consuming when I’m under pressure to get things done for the Bear Center and Research. Simplest is to skip the chicken and feed bologna and maybe some dog food and sunflower seeds.

I loved the way the fox’s coat looked today in the sun. It’s the usual culprit as recognized by the little black dots by the corner of its mouth.

I much appreciate hearing from people who care, like all of you. Thank you.

Thank you for all you do.

Lynn Rogers, Biologist, Wildlife Research Institute and North American Bear Center