Rose (California Gray Fox)
Our local Fish and Wildlife warden brought Rose to us in October 2011. She was kept in a backyard ever since she was tiny. The people felt they weren’t breaking any laws by feeding her since she was free to run around and come and go at will. Unfortunately what they were doing was habituating her (making her far too comfortable and friendly around humans). She relied on people for her food making her non-releasable.
We currently have her in an adjoining kennel to Fox Haven where Sterling and Shadow, our two permanent grey fox live. Over the past few months, they have accepted her through the fencing. We hope to place her in Fox Haven so all three can socialize.
California Gray Foxes are unusual because they are capable of climbing trees and unfortunately henhouse fences. They are smaller than the red fox found in the Midwest and on the east coast, but are larger than the endangered kit fox. Fox are especially shy and timid in the wild and so you might not see them as often as you will their bolder cousin the coyote. Gray foxes are most easily distinguished from the kit fox by the black strip that runs the length of the top of their tail while the kit fox only has a black tipped tail.