Jan 28

Hay= Play On This Snowy Day

Snowflakes have already started to fall here at the park and there’s a definite nip in the air. So, this time of year we add hay to the den boxes of all our outdoor species. This gives the animals extra bedding for snuggling up and keeping warm in their sleeping areas. We noticed that our two foxes, Monty and Roxy, kept pouncing and getting excited whenever we walked by with the hay.

So, in addition to the hay added to their den boxes for warmth, we thought we would try adding more hay in the middle of the habitat for enrichment, just to see what they would do with it. They are used to getting different types of enrichment in their habitats, but they seemed to be really interested in the hay. Well apparently a random pile of hay is a recipe for play!

They were running around with it, chasing each other, rolling in it, burying things, wrestling and the list goes on and on. But my favorite, by far, is when they grab a mouthful, shake it around, launch it into the air and shoot straight up off the ground to pounce on it; as if possibly it was going to get away if they didn’t act fast. Foxes are quite possibly the most playful animals I have ever worked with. I love watching them have fun with all the different toys and activities we provide. And nature helped us out today by adding a whole new dimension!

Click the photo below to see one of our foxes at play in the hay.