In recent years, every trip I take to a fox hunt is puzzling to some people who sincerely consider themselves to be hunters. More and more often I hear the question: “Why do you need a fox when its skin is worthless?” And if they find out that I hunt with flags and from hats, the bewilderment grows. Whether other types of fox hunting is a matter of driving a snowmobile or shooting rifles during the day in the fields. Here you will have both excitement, and sport, and sniper shooting for 300 meters. And it’s boring to stand on a room or shiver from the cold in the tower.
Yes, I will not argue, everyone, as they say, his own. I will only note that those who did not see how, on white snow, all the cunning beast sneaks to the number on fire in the sun or a dark silhouette appears in the light of the moon, ready to instantly hide from any careless movement of a hunter, he doesn’t know what fox hunting. And you need to see the beast closely, wait for it on yourself, and not shoot at an incomprehensible little ball at an incredible distance. Moreover, at the end of winter, for a proper hunter, these fox hunts remain the last chance to amuse the soul before the opening of the spring hunt. Hounds and huskies are no longer very willing to go in deep snow, it is difficult to suspect a white hare in a forest covered with snow, the cries of beaters on the battled hunts died down. There are only hunting for wolf, fox and wild hog-yearlings, or go to Africa. Wolf rounds – the lot of either professionals or the elect. A hungry hog from the tower at the feeders – hunting for an amateur. And the fox is there, available to any hunter. Take it – I do not want. Since in these ways I hunt foxes exclusively in the Moscow region, I’ll tell you about the intricacies of such a hunt. Perhaps, in other areas there is a specificity, but I am sure of one thing – the chanterelle near Moscow is the most beautiful.
As we know, the red fox is a beast that perfectly adapts to changes in habitat conditions. Similarly, the excessive development of land near Moscow by country “birdhouses” and cottages in no way affected its population. Moreover, the fall in the demand for furs and, naturally, a decrease in the press by hunters favorably affected the fox population. And a huge number of summer residents provided the enterprising animal with food in the form of waste. And, in my opinion, do not be afraid in connection with this outbreak of all kinds of epidemics and demand the destruction of foxes in any way. I remember 40 years ago came across the plague and rabid foxes, not more than they are now. Suffice it to say that of the 42 foxes, harvested by my friends in the Istra and Domodedovo districts of the Moscow region the year before last and 36 last season, there was not a single patient.
Secrets of a successful hunt
Let’s go directly to the hunt. A huge number of walking skiers in the Moscow region, especially on weekends, along with the inconvenience gives hunters and some advantages:
The foxes are not at all afraid of the ski track left by the hunter, they cut the whole forest around the suburban areas.
In the deep, friable snow, the foxes are attached to run along the tracks left by snowmobiles and skiers, where they can be watched with success.
But the snowmobiles and ATVs themselves are very disturbing to the hunt. Standing on the room and watching out mean silence, and the roar of the engines at the most inopportune moment frightens the fox that comes to the hunter or scares it from lying. However, the biggest advantage of hunting backfits in the evening and at night is that all the backfits located near the dacha plots are illuminated by street lamps of these plots. Given this factor, local hunters specifically build all the towers on the highlighted fields. And since the foxes and to the buildings, the situation is very successful. Even in late night, in complete darkness, in the absence of the moon, the hunter doesn’t need additional illumination for confident shooting. On the other hand, I do not recommend hunting in the evening near residential areas in the New Year holidays. Neither you nor the foxes will give rest to lovers of fireworks. Explosions of firecrackers will scare the animals all evening and the first half of the night. The stock of rockets from holidaymakers is unlimited. I once again checked it over the past holidays.
Where to take a bait
As you know, the main problem for the hunter in the bait is the extraction of this same bait. If an African hunter to attract a lion or a leopard easily extracts an antelope or a zebra (the expenses will still pay off with getting a valuable trophy), then it is at least frivolous to hunt foxes for hunting elk or boar. In the old days, when horses and cows were in every village yard, Sabaneev or Cherkasov did not have the trouble to get the fallen beast from the peasants or simply to buy healthy for slaughter. And where to get a bait modern hunter? I buy frozen chicken heads and legs in the store (which also significantly affects the price of fox pelts), rural hunters shoot stray dogs for a hitch. But this business is not simple and far from always causes understanding among the civilian population.