A couple of weeks ago I spent a morning visiting an excellent conservation charity near Tunbridge Wells in Kent called The Fox Project. Their focus is pretty much as you’d expect, being dedicated solely to the Red Fox, but hugely practically focussed offering science-based advice and information on a species forever drifting into the headlines for the wrong reasons it seems, as well as practical consultancy when it comes to humane deterrence: all in all a very balanced, pragmatic and highly laudable way of working.
They also run a wildlife ambulance service and associated hospital through which some 700 or so foxes pass each year: usually sick or injured adults but also very often abandoned cubs. Their policy is for recovered adult animals to be returned to their home territory and incorporates a programme of controlled rehabilitation of hand-raised fox cubs re-entering the wild in association and with the involvement of sympathetic farmers, smallholders and rural landowners.
This is where The Floorboarders (of whom these are just two) come in. They were recently brought in having been found under the floorboards of a house that was undertaking some re-development work – the early stages of which had clearly disturbed the mother sufficiently for them her to abandon the litter.
They are now at the early stages of their up-bringing before being re-introduced to the wild later this summer, a project absolutely typical of the work here.
I was there purely to take some images for a commissioned calendar project focussed on young wildlife I am working on. I was keen to have some conservation elements included in the work and this was a great opportunity to do so and hopefully bring the work of this excellent charity to a few more peoples attention too.
Many thanks to Trevor and Luci for being so helpful and accommodating – once again time spent behind my camera didn’t really feel like work at all!