A Wednesday in Bandhavgarh (tiger reserve in Central India). The park remains closed for afternoon-evening drives. To make use of every minute available before the afternoon sets in, we headed out towards the outskirts of the reserve with our guide with a promise of sighting a Fox. He took us to a spot where a fox apparently had a den. Setting a perimeter away from the den, a temporary hide was up in a jiffy and stood in wait.
Half an hour of waiting…. There was movement on the other side of the hide and we see a jackal entering. Staying wary of the “hide”, she sniffed around and to our surprise went halfway into a hole in the ground.
“Sir, she’s hungry and has entered the fox’s den to hunt. There must be pups!” whispered the guide. Taking photos, I was praying that the jackal stays unsuccessful in its effort to kill the pups.
Moments later, the fox (presumably the mother) sneaked up to the jackal only to be chased away by the predator much larger than her. Having chased the fox away, the jackal resumed her search in the fox’s den.
Anxious moments passed with the helpless fox watching and hoping her pups don’t get caught in the jaws of the hunter.
Finally it all came to an end. The frustrated jackal gave up and left the den and fox alone. Relieved that the predator had left, the fox sat within vicinity of the den on the lookout for other predators.
Minutes later, we left the hide too in relief that no pups were killed. Nevertheless an exciting encounter was witnessed.
Canon 40D + Sigma 500 f4.5