One of the most elusive wild animals in Britain has been spotted chilling on a garden wall in Yorkshire.
A super rare black fox has been sighted, sunning itself atop a local resident’s garden wall on a bright Wednesday morning this week.
Not only is the animal a rather majestic-looking creature, it also has a super-rare genetic defect which gives the black fox its distinctive fur.
The 7.30am sighting in Halifax, Yorkshire has delighted animal-loving conservationists, as well as the woman who spotted the creature, Mateja Kuder, 42.
Kuder described the encounter, saying:
After I closed the window I looked up she was looking at me. I took off my slippers and started to run across the house to find where my tablet was so that I could take some photos.
To my surprise when I came back she was still there. There was less than a metre between us. I was taking photos for around five minutes. I knew it was a fox and thought it wasn’t a big deal until I did some research and realised how rare it was.
The apparent Harry Potter fan and animal enthusiast added, ‘When you think Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them the answer is apparently in Halifax.’
This fox has been sighted four times by Halifax locals in the past weeks – despite only a total of five recorded sightings. It is believed there must be two mating foxes in the area currently, reports the Mirror.
Black fur is typically only found in cubs, and only if both parents have a recessive melanistic gene that causes a dark coat. Even then, there’s only a 1 in 4 chance the cub’s coat would stay dark into adulthood.
A spokesperson for Black Foxes UK, former zookeeper Hayley de Ronde, said she believed the foxes recently sighted are the descendants of the famous ‘Black Fox Bob’.
The animals are the rarest in Britain, at least in part because they were once hunted for their spectacular coat.