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Black fox?

Friday we’ve spotted a creature in the Park (near entry #20, Deville street, along the building of what was Frank & Dino Aliments). It looked like a fluffy black cat, with a long fluffy tail and a longer and more pointy nose than usual. It was moving quickly, with agility, staying close to the ground. It looked strange for a cat. I couldn’t take any picture but our first thought was “Could that be a fox?”. My wife once saw a fox in the park. Usually foxes are red but I know that some can have darker colour. A quick search on the internet confirmed that in Canada the Silver fox has a black fur with white tips and that there are increased sighting of them in the GTO. So, why not in here? 

Although, after looking at the pictures on the web, I am not so sure. The creature we saw had no white tip on the tail and foxes walk taller, looking more like a dog than a cat. Maybe it was a youngster. Or maybe it was just a fluffy black cat with a long fluffy tail and a longer and more pointy nose than usual… Has anyone seen something like that?

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My nephew suggests that the creature we saw was a Fisher (a.k.a. the “Fisher Cat” or “Pékan” or “Martre pêcheuse” in French — the scientific name is Martes pennanti). It is in the family of the Mustelidae (like the weasels, otters and ferrets). He says he saw one last year in a park of Montreal and, indeed, there had been many sightings in the West Island and southshore. I agree that it is certainly a suitable candidate (although the creature we saw looked a little smaller, fluffier and I am not sure it was moving in a hopping way like the Fisher). Here are a few videos to give you an idea of what the Fisher looks like: Complètement Animal: Le Pékan, Fisher cat vs squirrel, Fisher cat in Vermont snow, Meet the Fisher, Fisher in North Bay, Ontario. I’ll keep an eye on the area in case I could see it again and confirm this identification.