The foxes became trapped at what the Coast Guard called a "common incident location".
The Coast Guard at Howth Harbour has shared "unique" footage of two foxes trapped on a sandbank at Baldoyle Estuary, after the tide came in around them.
If seeing foxes this far away from the suburbs or Farthing Wood isn't enough to make you look twice, the frantic wondering as to whether they made it safely back to shore or not surely is.
📹 Here’s a very unique video documenting 2 foxes trapped on our local #baldoyle estuary sandbanks, a common incident location.
🦊🦊 This video shows how quickly the situation can change and the ground around you disappear until nothing is left. Did they make it back safe?… 1/2 pic.twitter.com/V1IiQCFH7y
— Irish Coast Guard - Howth Harbour Station (@HowthCoastGuard) August 25, 2022
Luckily, the Coast Guard confirmed the animals swam back to safety "as their last resort". Crafty as a... well, you know yourself.
According to allthingsfoxes.com (a joyous website if you're looking for a bit of wholesome scrolling), foxes can swim quite well, but "they tend to try to stay away from water as they are not fans of getting wet". They generally don't swim for fun unless they're overheated or "trying to play with members of their family" (I told you it was wholesome). The reasons for these foxes taking to water could be to hunt, or to protect themselves if they were being chased by a predator. When they do swim, they travel at roughly 2 to 3 miles per hour, doggy paddle style.
The website also lists "territory" as a reason for foxes swimming - if a fox’s territory is on land that exists beyond a body of water, then they will swim to get across it - although this pair would have a fair stretch of Irish sea to swim across before coming across territory of any sort. According to wildlife experts, foxes also like eating crabs and can avoid their natural predators at the beach, which could explain this seaside visit.
In any case, the Coast Guard has used the foxes becoming stranded as an example of how quickly the tide can change, and has advised walkers to check tide times before heading out for a beach side stroll. More helpful advice for how to stay safe at sea can be found HERE.
Header image via Twitter/howthcoastguard