Wily & Wary - Red Fox
(scroll down for description)
24" x 32", acrylic on board, 1979

The red fox population expanded as man moved into the forest with his clearing. It has thrived and has won a reputation for wiliness and opportunism. His unending appetite for mice has made the fox of great benefit in farmland, but his taste for domestic fowl has made him enemies among farmers.
In late winter, when food becomes more scarce, he may hunt in the daytime, always alert not only for quarry but for enemies. Heavy snow cover makes fence rows a good place to look for mice and rabbits.
When pioneers first cleared the land, they cut the huge virgin pines and used the lumber for building their houses and barns. To finish clearing the fields, the great stumps were pulled out and placed in rows as fences. These resinous roots have lasted for a century or more, and are excellent wildlife habitat. They are now disappearing only because of the more convenient wire fences which take less space.