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Posts Tagged ‘fox’

Out of the corner of my eye I detected some movement on the ground as I was looking up at an eagle nest early Thursday morning at Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge. As I turned my head, a shadowy form emerged out of the brush and began to trot down the trail—it was a Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes).

I do not see foxes very often at this refuge and have been told that most of them have been killed by the resident coyotes, so this was a pleasant surprise. I tried to focus on the fox as it moved away from me, but my photos were mostly out of focus and featured only the legs and tail of the fox. Then the fox stopped and looked back in my direction for a moment and I was able to capture this image as we stared momentarily at each other.

Red Fox

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Early yesterday morning I trudged through the crusted snow to my favorite spot at Huntley Meadows Park. Along the way I saw a Bald Eagle and a hawk, so I knew that it was going to be a good day.

My favorite spot is a beaver pond in a somewhat remote area of the park. l like to sit at the edge of the pond and watch and wait as a feeling of peace and serenity gradually envelops me. It seems so far removed from the hurried rat race characteristic of the Washington D.C. area and has a restorative effect on my overall well-being.

The pond is frozen now, so I am able to sit on one of the logs that make up the beaver dam and extend my feet over the ice. I place a big plastic bag on the log and sit on a folded towel, so it’s pretty comfortable, even when the temperature is below freezing, as it was yesterday.

As I was looking toward a Great Blue Heron to my left, I detected some movement out of the corner of my right eye. I stopped breathing for a moment when I saw that a Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) was standing on the ice. It looked like the fox had been planning to cross the pond and stopped when it spotted me.

Our eyes met for a moment as I took a few shots. Then the unthinkable happened. I pressed my shutter button and the shutter did not engage. Glancing down at my camera, I saw that the battery had died—several hours of freezing temperatures had temporarily drained the battery. This had happened before, although never at a critical moment, so I had another battery in my pocket.

I tried to change the battery as quickly as possible, but the additional movement spooked the fox a little and and it turned around and made its way back to the far bank of the pond. I managed to get a final shot of the fox after the battery change. The fox’s face is not visible, but at least you can see its bushy tail.

Red Fox

Red Fox

Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Last week I conducted a poll to see which of my four recent photo contest entries was your favorite image and the fox came out on top with 43 percent, followed by the bluebird (28 %), the eagle 18 %), and the dragonfly (11 %). Thanks to all of you who voted and especially to those who left comments about your choice. I was intrigued, but not surprised, by the fact that the favorite of the readers—the fox— was different from the choice of the contest judge—the dragonfly.

Several readers commented, however, that the particular image of the Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) that I used was not their favorite one. I had previously done three postings from the magical encounter with the fox and one of the other shots seemed to speak to some readers more than the one I submitted for the contest.

So I am seeking your views again by reprising all of the fox photos and asking you to vote for your favorite. Do you prefer the fox standing up or leaning over the water? Do you like it more when the fox is looking directly at you or at an angle? Does it make a difference if the fox’s bushy tail is visible? I realize that it may not be easy to narrow your choice down to a single image, so I have tried to set up the poll to permit multiple choices.

If I have set this up correctly, you can click on any image and scroll through each of them in full size. After viewing them all, select your favorite (or favorites) and register your vote. I’d be really happy if you left a few words about your choice. NOTE: If you open the posting in Reader, you may need to click on the Title to get to the poll and to actual posting in which you can scroll through the photos in larger size as a kind of slide show.

 

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

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I’m dreaming of a white Christmas, but it looks like it won’t happen here this year, with a high temperature for today forecast to reach 70 degrees (21 degrees C).

So I decided to reprise a more seasonally appropriate shot from a couple of years ago at Huntley Meadows Park. In early January 2014 I spotted this Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) circling around a beaver pond, not far from where I took my most recent fox shots.

Merry Christmas to all of my friends here who support and encourage me on my journey into photography and best wishes to you and your families as we move toward the start of a new year.

Red Fox

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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I’ve finally made my way through all the photos that I took of my recent encounter with a Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) at Huntley Meadows Park in Alexandria, Virginia and found some more good ones to post. My dear friend and photography mentor Cindy Dyer helped me to select these and to get them ready for printing.

There is a photo contest at the park and the entry deadline is tomorrow, so we were scrambling to get a fox image ready to submit. There is a limit of four photographs per photographer and I’m pretty sure that the first one below is the fox photo that I will enter, along with photos of a bluebird, an eagle, and a dragonfly. This is the first time I’ve ever printed any of my photos bigger than snapshot size—the submission images will be 11 inches by 14 inches (29 x 36 cm) matted to 16 inches by 20 inches (41 x 51 cm)—and the first time that I have entered a contest.

If you haven’t seen my previous posting with photos of this session with the fox, check out Fox at water’s edge and Fox at water’s edge—part two.

Red Fox

Red Fox

Red Fox

Red Fox

Red Fox

Red Fox

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

 

 

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I’m still making my way through my photos from my recent encounter with a Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes), trying to decide which ones I like most. What an unexpected pleasure it is to have so many shots from which to choose.

I am so thankful and feel blessed that I had the chance to observe the fox in the wild for a relatively extended period of time. For more info on the encounter, check out my initial posting Fox at water’s edge.

Here are a couple more of my initial favorite images from the shoot. Stay tuned for another possible posting if I decide that I simply have to share a few more images.

Red Fox

Red Fox

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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A couple of days ago I began a posting with the words “Redheads tend to be stunning, rare, and elusive” and I could easily have used those words to describe the Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) that I encountered yesterday morning at Huntley Meadows Park.

The fox appeared to be hunting at the edge of the water of one of the ponds in a remote part of the park. I was standing at the edge of the water on the other side of a beaver pond from the fox when it emerged from the vegetation and walked to the water. I don’t think the fox was ever aware of my presence. I tried to stay composed and motionless as I snapped away with my camera.

Initially I thought the fox was simply getting a drink of water, but it walked along the shore for a few minutes as though it were seeking prey. Eventually it faded back into the brush and the magical moments came to an end,

I’m still going through my photos, but here’s an initial favorite. I suspect there will be a follow-up posting or two, but I can’t contain my excitement about the encounter and the fact that I was able to capture some images.

fox

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

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This past weekend I caught a glimpse of a fox in motion at Huntley Meadows Park—I’m pretty sure it was doing the foxtrot. I was staring across a mostly frozen beaver pond, when suddenly this red fox (Vulpes vulpes) burst into my field of view. It was running slowly around one edge of the pond, heading in the direction of a wooded area.

I didn’t have much time to react, so I had to make do with the existing camera settings. The exposure was dialed in about right and the shutter speed was fast enough. What I didn’t realize at that moment, though, was that I was in servo mode, because I had been shooting some geese in flight, so I was happy that I somehow managed to lock the focus on the moving fox pretty well. I was a little chagrined after the fact to realize that my zoom lens had not been fully extended—the images were shot at about 200mm on a 70-300mm lens.

I did get some action shots of the fox, but the first image is my favorite. The fox had paused for a split second and was looking back in the direction from which it had come and there is a lot of facial detail.

It’s especially fascinating for me to see the position of the bushy tail when the fox was moving. Often it seems like the tail is parallel to the ground. It’s cool too that I was able to catch the fox in mid-jump, with its feet almost entirely in the air. The snow is mostly gone from the ground today, so I am particularly thankful that I was able to capture some images of this brief encounter with the fox in a wintery scene.

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fox_trot3_blog© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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I continue to be amazed at the diversity of the wildlife at Huntley Meadows Park, the local marshland park where I capture most of my wildlife photos. Monday, as I stood at the spot where I had previously spotted an otter, I caught a glimpse of this beautiful red fox (Vulpes vulpes) as it walked around part of the perimeter of a beaver pond.

This was the first time that I had seen a fox in the wild and the wonderful red coloration was breathtakingly beautiful. I was amazed too at the bushiness of the tail. Wow!

The first photo was actually the last one in the sequence, but I really like the way that it helps to show you the setting, with the cattails surrounding the beaver pond (there are woods beyond the cattails).

fox4_blog

fox1_blogfox2_blogfox3_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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