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18:51

Frolicking foxes

About two weeks ago, my wife and I drove past a bunch of foxes walking around the cemetery next to the Pembroke (Mass.) Friends Meetinghouse. I pass it almost every day and have never seen them before. I knew we had gone by a great photo opportunity. The Meetinghouse, which was built in 1706, sits at a busy intersection. But it’s an ideal location if you’re a fox, I suppose. There are thick woods adjacent and a feed store a block away that sells live chickens. My wife, who is also a photographer, and I decided to return with our 300 mm and 400 mm lenses. We had never seen such a large group of foxes together like this. After that first day, we rarely saw them. Then on one evening, we saw the mother fox run through the woods towards the house. By this time, it was close to 7 p.m., and the warm sunlight bathed the foxes in a golden glow. It was that moment that we waited so long for. We both quietly walked the perimeter, hugging a rock wall like hunters, except armed with cameras. We split up, taking different sides. All the foxes were out now. It was a perfect moment. The cubs played and frolicked on the lawn, against the house, and around the headstones. They seemed impervious to us being there. We stayed until the mother took off with one of the cubs into the woods. We looked at each other and felt we had witnessed something extraordinary. From that day, we haven’t seen them since. -- By John Tlumacki/Globe Staff photographer

Two fox cubs played around an old headstone at the cemetery at the Pembroke Friends Meetinghouse, where they have a den underneath the house. (John Tlumacki/Globe Staff)

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