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Fox Boules Bandit Caught on Camera May 4, 2012
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Night-vision images of a rogue fox stealing a ball used for sport in southern France.
A fox was caught red-eyed by an infrared camera as it stole metal balls used in the popular southern France game of pétanque boules.

Patrick Cazes, an amateur pétanque player, says he initially couldn’t figure out why his boules kept disappearing when he left them out overnight in his private playing field near Toulouse.

After 38 went missing, he set up a night-vision camera to catch what he thought were children in his village absconding with his boules.

But the French daily La Dépèche reports Cazes was startled to find that a local fox was the culprit when he played back the video.

Footage he posted on the Internet shows the animal grabbing the boules in its jaw and hauling them away.

But Cazes says he doesn’t understand the motive, or especially, why the fox was more interested in his sports gear than a nearby henhouse.

Video stills: Patric Cazes