Life’s a riot with fox vs magpie

Posted By on July 16, 2010

I wish I had some video of this particular interaction to share with you, but unfortunately not, you’ll have to picture it for yourselves…

In the garden, on the lawn: one of the fox cubs. (This particular cub seems to have taken to hanging out in the main visible bit of the garden during the morning and later afternoon/evening.) Also around and about, one of the local magpies, scavenging on the lawn for scraps of food, and occasionally heading up into one of the apple trees to squawk about something.

The magpie is not afraid of the fox. Every time the fox starts making a move towards the magpie, the magpie lets the cub get within a few feet and then flaps off a little way. We’re not talking any significant distance here… the two of them were circling the garden (which is not THAT big) for a few minutes. Eventually the fox gives up and lies down on the lawn – and at that point the magpie circles round behind the fox and starts pecking his tail (or remarkably close to it). This magpie is, essentially, teasing the fox.

At this point, Lardy Cat saunters out of the cat flap (Small Cat had been watching the proceedings with what I suspect was an air of feline bemusement). The fox backs off a bit — thinking the cat’s after him — but the cat has eyes only for the magpie. The magpie’s backing away from the cat, which would be towards the fox if it wasn’t for the fox also keeping back from the cat; there’s a minute or so of tension before the magpie decides that discretion is the better part of valour, or at least the better part of keeping your tail feathers, and heads back up into the tree.

This particular fox does not strike me as a Great and Mighty Hunter!

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