A Joke Backfires

After a hard winter, spring is finally arriving. Food is becoming easier to find, so Fox decides to call off the food raids. Kestrel, Speedy and Whistler decide for a joke not to tell Owl. So Owl continues to raid dustbins and drop food for the animals. Meanwhile, Badger eventually asks Owl why she is still bringing food, and Owl is hurt that nobody told her. Owl flies off and spots the poachers entering the park, but cannot face telling Fox. She is beside herself with guilt when she hears a gunshot, and then hears that a fox has been shot dead. Owl believes that it is Fox who has been killed. Kestrel finds her extremely upset, and tells her that it was a young blue fox, one of Scarface’s sons, who was killed. Scarface is furious that Fox has caused the death of his son, and gets Weasel to pass the message on to Fox. Fox is prepared to give himself up to the poachers, but Vixen persuades him that it would be a pointless sacrifice. The next time the poachers return, the deer herd chase them off by charging at them.

Vixen gives birth to four cubs, who are named Bold, Dreamer, Friendly and Charmer. Lady Blue has another litter of cubs, one is named Ranger. The Rabbits and Hares also have babies. Badger is worried about Mole, who is missing.

Kestrel brings the good news that the warden has returned from hospital, though the poachers do not know this. The next evening the poachers return shooting at anything that moves. Fox has an idea. He goes looking for the poachers and attracts their attention. They chase Fox through the park, as he leads them towards the warden’s cottage. Meanwhile, the other Farthing animals and the deer herd follow on behind. Near the warden’s cottage, the poachers take a shot at Fox, but miss. The gunfire attracts the attention of the warden, who comes out with his gun to arrest the poachers. Behind them stands a victorious group of animals.

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