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Calling Fox for Great Canine Action


Red Fox Prefer agriculture areas and are a great challenge to predator hunters

When it comes to predator hunting, most of the attention is focused on Coyotes. Since their influx into our area and their impact on our wildlife, hunting and killing coyotes is beneficial and fun. We will explore more about hunting coyotes next time. But today, we are focusing on the little canine that I and many other southern predator hunters cut our teeth on – the grey and red fox.

These little canines are wary, swift, and in many cases elusive. Seldom are landowners aware of their presence due to their mostly nocturnal behavior. I am reluctant to refer to calling fox as easy, it is anything but easy, but when fox are in the area they readily respond to calls and normally do so quickly.

Greys are normally found in more wooded areas while the wily red is more accustomed to agriculture lands. When hunting them, I normally don’t discriminate rather set up where either could answer my calls. Like all predator hunting, the setup is critical. Namely, getting in and situated up wind with good visibility. One of my favorite situations is along overgrown pastures. Most pastures have a wooded edge or overgrown fence row. Setting up along this can be some of the most productive areas. In South Carolina, we cannot use electronic calls for fox, so I personally have no experience calling them with electronic calls. I prefer the jackrabbit and cottontail calls, with my preference to the more raspy jackrabbit from Mallard Tone calls. This has put a lot of fur in my truck over the years.

I realize everyone has their own style, so I will share mine – after getting setup, I let the woods settle for about ten minutes while carefully surveying the more likely places the fox will appear. Then using the Jackrabbit I scream into is as loud as I can and make it as raspy as possible. I will wail into this call at full force for about 3-4 minutes. Then sit quietly for several minutes. My second cadence will be more subdued incase a fox is on its way in, I don’t want to scare it with volume. After a few minutes with this midrange calling I follow it up with some lip squeaks.

Grey's are more plentiful and more aggressive when calling

My records show that the overwhelming majority of my fox are killed within the first ten minutes of a stand. If however I have to stay for a while, I stay no longer than twenty minutes at a stand. Moving at least a half mile and repeating the process.

When a fox appears, I love to allow them to get as close as possible, but just like with all predators, you better take the first shot presented because if they suspect anything they will bust out of there with light speed.

Weapon choices for fox vary based on the distance I expect to shoot. Since the animal is small, usually weighing between eight and ten pounds it doesn’t take a lot to anchor them. I really like the .22 Magnum shooting 33 gr ballistic tip bullets. Or when a scattergun is needed, the 12 gauge with # 3 is about perfect. This size shot is great for running shots, and won’t blow them apart at close range. However if you prefer centerfire rifles, the .22-250 shooting 45 gr ballistic is also a great choice. With this round, anything you can see with your bare eyes is in range. I have used them all, but admittedly I have killed far more using a shotgun due to the terrain I tend to hunt.

Calling fox is indeed a lot of fun, the action is fast, the fur is beautiful and the challenge is excellent. If you are itching for the opportunity to call predators, don’t focus on just the coyotes, we are fortunate that we have two other canines we can call and enjoy the excitement of having predators hunt us.