Monday, February 6th | 16 Shevat 5783

April 22, 2020 9:28 am

Emboldened by Closures, Foxes Prowl an Ancient Port City in Israel

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avatar by Reuters and Algemeiner Staff

A red fox stands in an empty park in the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon, April 16, 2020. Photo: Reuters / Amir Cohen..

Red foxes have been making appearances in the Israeli city of Ashkelon, drawn out from the seclusion of the desert dunes by the coronavirus lockdown that has kept people off the streets.

The animals, usually a rare sight in busy urban areas, have a biblical resonance. In the Book of Lamentations, the Jewish temple site in Jerusalem is described as so desolate that “foxes prowl upon it.”

In Ashkelon, an ancient Mediterranean seaport and now one of Israel’s main southern cities, a family of foxes has become a regular feature — nosing through discarded food, and playing sometimes unfriendly hide-and-seek with dogs in a local park.

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