Alongside Route 103 throughout the border in Kittery Level are indicators saying one thing like “Sluggish Down, Fox Crossing.” The Kittery Fb web page had a flurry of postings all final 12 months and this spring and early summer time with fox sightings, reminding drivers that the fox household was as soon as once more denning alongside the closely traveled street. The city appeared to take these animals on as their particular mission, demanding that the group take care of this little household as they’d every other.
I drive by these indicators commonly once I go to my hometown. They do instigate me to decelerate. I at all times hope to see the fox — lastly just a few nights in the past I used to be rewarded with a sighting of an grownup fox maybe 20 toes from one of many warning indicators.
The priority for this wild household is refreshing given the fixed solutions of extermination or relocation at any time when a fox or fisher or weasel sighting is talked about on Fb group pages. Whereas it’s doable for people to eradicate a complete species (take the passenger pigeon for an instance), it’s unlikely you’ll eradicate an animal you contemplate a pest. Most occasions killing a fox or coyote simply leaves a window for one more to maneuver into the territory. It’s common information that it’s higher to “prepare your dragon” — and take accountability for protecting your chickens or small pets secure slightly than eliminating every part that could be a risk to them.
A fast on-line search of “foxes residing with people” comes up with a number of websites that speak about foxes and their urban-living tendencies. “City foxes are beginning to resemble home animals” (insidescience.org); “How foxes are domesticating themselves” (salon.com); “What to do when foxes transfer in” (weblog.nwf.org); and “The right way to coexist with foxes” (nativeanimalrescue.org) are only a few articles that seem. How good that Kittery Level residents appear to have embraced this fox household.
Bald eagles can virtually be thought-about frequent sights as of late. Driving on the Spaulding Turnpike final week, one flew proper above my windshield not so shut as to threat coming involved with my automotive however shut sufficient that I might see its eye. Based on the New Hampshire nongame net web page, bald eagle administration within the state started in 1980. One pair constructed a nest on Lake Umbagog in 1988 and for nearly a decade this was the one documented nesting pair within the state. The birds lastly started increasing and “new territorial pairs have gotten established all through the state on a virtually annual foundation.”
One other animal I encountered just lately that I haven’t seen in years is a rabbit (or extra possible, as I mentioned in a current column, a hare). The animal ran throughout the street in entrance of my automotive in Eaton. I discovered this very encouraging given the current sighting of now two rabbits (or hares) at my pal’s within the Rochester space and now this one. That the hare inhabitants, based mostly on nothing greater than these sightings, appears to be on the rise makes me surprise first, what inhabitants is on the decline (coyotes?) that the hares are surviving sufficient to be seen by people and second, what inhabitants will quickly be on the rise (additionally coyotes?) that may discover nourishment within the rising hare inhabitants.
Driving round appears to be a good way to see wildlife. On a winding street in southern Maine one night up to now couple of weeks I slowed to a crawl to permit a doe and fawn to cross the street in entrance of me. As I continued to crawl alongside — the place there’s one deer there’s typically extra — a doe, two extra fawns, and one other doe citing the rear crossed the street. I believe it’s secure to say that southern Maine has a thriving deer inhabitants.
Lastly, a reader just lately emailed a photograph (accompanying this column) of side-by-side nests. He knew they had been robin nests however questioned why they’d be collectively like this. I actually have by no means seen it earlier than. Has anybody else? Ed from Salem contemplated whether or not they’re the identical pair with side-by-side nests or two totally different pairs nesting concurrently or two totally different pairs that nested consecutively. He additionally provided an apology: “Sorry, robins, prior to now I’ve by no means had a lot curiosity in you.”
Has anybody else seen this or know why the robins would do that? The nests are barely totally different, which makes me surprise if they’re nests of the identical species. Is there one thing occurring right here within the pure world that we have now but to develop into conscious of? Over-population or habitat shortage that makes it laborious to seek out secure nesting areas and subsequently the birds are, like people, “condo-izing” their residing surroundings? Possibly Ed from Salem has found a key change within the pure world.