The highlight of my day? Watching a red fox trot along the edge of the pines in our backyard this morning. She paused by the chicken coop, sniffed the air, considered the possibilities, and then continued on by. I’ve seen quite a few this year, mostly along the road in the evening, but this is the first at the house this spring.

Or rather, this is the first we’ve seen at the house this spring. When there’s snow in the winter, we can follow their routes: across the backyard, along the beaver pond down the road, through the Audubon sanctuary across the road from us. I suspect they’ve made off with more than one of our chickens, though between the coyotes, the hawks, the owls, the weasels, and the foxes, it’s more a wonder we have any chickens at all.

In any case, this fox looked in remarkable health as she trotted through the yard. I expect we’ll be hearing them soon as well, once it warms up enough to have the windows open at night. If you haven’t ever heard a red fox before, look them up online. Trust me, the sound is not what you’re expecting.