Dec 28, 2013

The Fox and the Fence



Yesterday, WES received an urgent call from a Los Gatos resident. A fox was caught by its head in a chain link fence. The reporting party (RP) had just spotted it in her backyard, but the animal could have been stuck for some time.

Gray foxes are excellent climbers - they can scale tall chain link fences with ease. For some reason, though, this gray fox tried to go through the wire mesh rather than up and over it. 

One of our volunteer First Responders, Dana, responded. Here's her story:

When I arrived on scene, the RP showed led me to where the fox was trapped. Not surprisingly, the animal was extremely stressed, and it was important that we rescue him as quickly as possible. 

The fox had, somehow, managed to wedge his head through one of the small diamond-shaped openings and could not pull himself free, though there was evidence that he had struggled for a long time. In his attempts to get free, he'd dug a deep hole in the dirt.

After getting a look at the situation firsthand, I created a plan of action that would allow me to remove the fox from the wire, but maintain control enough to then place him into a transport carrier. We did not want to just set the fox free. We did not know how long it had been stuck or if it was injured. 

As I approached the fox, it struggled to get away, but then quieted as I got hold of him. 

Its head was stuck so tight that I had to cut two wires, which then allowed it to wiggle out and wait guidance. 



Once in the carrier, he quieted down quickly, which is not always a good sign. We delivered the fox to the Wildlife Center of Silicon Valley, where he would receive an examination and treatment for any injuries.

Photo Credit: Wildlife Center of Silicon Valley


UPDATE: December 30th 

Photo Credit: Wildlife Center of Silicon Valley



Today we received word that the fox is improving. He was admitted with a limp - perhaps that's why he tried to go through the fence to begin with, rather than climb over it. He was also treated for dehydration. 

It looks like he'll be ready for release in a couple of days!












UPDATE: January 3rd

The fox was released this evening, just before dark. Dana transported the fox back to Los Gatos and released the fox in the wooded front yard next door to where it had been trapped. Check out the video:



Happy New Year, Fox!


A HUGE THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO 
HELPED RESCUE THIS LOVELY CREATURE!


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