A fox, a deer and a skunk all gather for a night meeting near a tree. Credit: Courtesy of Corinne Blanchard

One thing that has become clear to me as Bangor Daily News readers continue to send us their trail camera photos and videos: I didn’t really have an accurate idea of what life in nature was really like.

I mean, I understood that some animals grouped up with others in their species, whether for mating or social reasons. And I knew that there was a predator-and-prey dynamic that would also lead to animals ending up in close proximity to each other.

The photos have certainly showed both of those facts to be true.

What I didn’t really think of, however, was how many times animals of different species end up in the same neighborhood just because they all live in the same forest.

Today’s trail camera photo, which was sent in by Corinne Blanchard of Searsport, illustrates one such interaction. Blanchard says it shows a deer, a gray fox and a skunk all hanging out in her backyard. (I’m not a gray fox expert, so I’ll take her word on that one).

“We call this, ‘The Standoff,'” Blanchard said in her email.

Standoff? Or just a meeting of the minds? It’s hard to tell.

In an earlier trail camera photo, we learned that owls will sometimes swoop down on skunks, but this fox doesn’t seem to have any interest in having the little stinker over for lunch. The deer would also seem a bit too big to chew on for a single fox.

Whatever the case, the skunk doesn’t seem to be taking any chances, and has assumed its power position — tail up, ready to spray.

Feel free to provide your own caption for this cool photo, and keep your submissions coming!

Do you have a trail camera photo or video to share? Send it to jholyoke@bangordailynews.com and tell us “I consent to the BDN using my photo.” In order to prevent neighbors from stopping by to try to tag particularly large bucks, moose or bears, some identities and towns of origin may be omitted.

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John Holyoke has been enjoying himself in Maine's great outdoors since he was a kid. He spent 28 years working for the BDN, including 19 years as the paper's outdoors columnist or outdoors editor. While...