Fox Loses Cub In Storm Drain, Humans Rally To Help
Joshua Patton 10/23/2017
Life in the wild is a struggle for any creature, where fear of being "prey" keeps wary animals alive. Yet, sometimes, these wild animals find unlikely allies in humans like this British fox who lost its cub and didn't want to leave it behind.
The cub was first spotted on an October night in 2016, and its mother was seen lingering around as well, but then they both disappeared. The cub was seen later the next day at the bottom of a drain in a cul-de-sac in the East Sussex neighborhood.
Rescuers from the East Sussex Wildlife Rescue and Ambulance Service (WRAS) were called by the homeowners to see what they could do for the cub.
The rescuers could hear the cub moving around and making noise, but they couldn't find where in the maze of pipes that the little fella was hiding. They used cameras on mobile phones to film inside the pipes and probed them with hoses and other tools.
While working to rescue the cub, the WRAS crew saw something that surprised them. The mother fox, known as a "Vixen," was seen lingering around where they were working. One of the WRAS crew said it was like the fox knew they were trying to get her lost cub.
Yet, nothing is ever easy. After working for 90 minutes, the WRAS crew realized the cub had to be in a section of pipe that they couldn't reach with tools. They knew if they just left the cub would perish, but they also knew that the only way to get at the cub was to "play the waiting game."
The WRAS crew had other casualties and rescues to address, so they went away for a few hours. When they returned, one of the WRAS crew members laid on the ground and reached his hand down the drainage hole and he felt the cub wriggling nearby just out of reach. After three tries, the cub backed up enough that the WRAS crew was able to pull the little bugger out of the drain.
The cub was wet and filthy, so the WRAS crew went back to their headquarters to clean the cub and ensure that he didn't have any injuries. In less than an hour, the freshly washed and dried baby fox was taken back to where they found him so he could be reunited with his mother.
The WRAS crew wasn't sure if the mother would still be around or if they would be able to successfully reunite the family. So, they placed the fox cub in a pet carrier and left the top hatch open. Soon the mother fox appeared, and the magical reunion took place.
"As if the rescue hadn't been amazing already, within minutes of us returning mum appeared and walked straight over to a pet carrier which we had placed the cub in. As soon as the cub realized mum was there he was so excited and desperately wanted to get out the carrier. With some help from mum he managed to climb out and mum escorted him back home again. It was unbelievably emotional for all of us."
The WRAS is not an official British government organization, but rather is a charity which funds its work via donations from the general public. They are available to save critters in trouble any hour of the day, any day of the year.
Watch the dramatic rescue unfold in the video below: