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Urban foxes

(172 Posts)
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j08 Sun 10-Feb-13 10:02:40

When are the authorities going to get sensible and start culling them? How many babies are going to have to be attacked in their homes before they realise just how out of control these things are getting? angry

absent Sun 10-Feb-13 10:09:19

Of course one baby is one too many but I am not sure that things are yet massively out of control. This is a rare occurrence but no doubt some of the media will go into hysterics about it. It's puzzling how the creature got into the baby's room, considering that it's winter, but that's a side issue.

How do you go about culling urban foxes? Poison would be tricky because foxes often live in parks where people walk their dogs and children play. Shooting would cause a fair amount of public distress. I suppose gassing might work. It's obviously not a straightforward issue.

gracesmum Sun 10-Feb-13 10:23:07

You could re-establish some packs of fox hounds perhaps? It could become a tourist attraction. I can just see the Hackney East Hunt clattering down Mare Street after the meet at London Fields, or indeed the Victoria Square Hunt in hot pursuit through Brindley Place.No? grin DD3 used to belong to the Pony Club and went to the children's meets of the Oakley West - but before anybody gets up in arms, Oakley West was renowned for never catching anything - I actually saw a fox once snaking through a hedge while the pack in full throat headed off in the opposite direction.
But seriously foxes and rats are a major problem in our cities and the mounds of fast food/burger/kebab wrapping and leftovers on our streets seriously aggravates the situation. I regularly see rats as I walk bak to the car form MK station or outside the M&S end of the shopping centre. Will it be foxes next?

glammanana Sun 10-Feb-13 10:30:41

Looking at the TV report on the subject this morning from Bromley it showed all the shops with boxes of waste food outside their shops it will surely attract vermin and foxes to the area,the foodstuffs where not even bagged up just left open to the elements so what do the authorities expect if they cannot collect from the shops at the end of business,disgraceful.Reports that there could be thousands of foxes in the area does imo mean some kind of culling should be put into motion asap.

absent Sun 10-Feb-13 10:32:20

gracesmum When I lived in London (up until 2010) the "flower"beds on the District line platforms at South Ken station were always a seething mass of rodents at any time of day.

I live opposite a little park and was often woken at night by the howl of a vixen. Sometimes during the day I would see a fox walking up the middle of the road as bold as brass. (It is a cul de sac so very little traffic.) I would also quite often see one walking along the top of the quite high wall at the back of the house in the evening.

Foxes also carry diseases that can affect both humans and dogs – something which is probably a much commoner problem than attacks on babies, horrible though they are. Something does need to be done but what and by whom? The chances of all the London boroughs co-operating and indeed spending the requisite amount of money is about as likely my being made Pope

j08 Sun 10-Feb-13 10:34:34

My daughter lives in outer London and it is horrific the number of foxes come into her garden. In summer they sit there in the sun and are completely without fear.

Bags Sun 10-Feb-13 11:12:08

It's our food waste that's the real problem. Less of that for scavengers would mean fewer scavengers.

Bags Sun 10-Feb-13 11:14:45

Or, if we must throw a lot of food out, we need to have scavenger-proof bins and proper ways of disposing of the waste (anaerobic heat composting and burning come to mind) so that scavengers can't get at it and theirnpopulations won,t grow accordingly.

It's our fault there are so many urban foxes, not theirs. The foxes are just doing what living things do – finding effective ways to stay alive.

j08 Sun 10-Feb-13 11:15:41

Yes. I know what you mean. But DD lives on a "leafy" borough road, no fast food chains, etc. near. I think the foxes are getting hungrier due to the inaccessible wheelie bins. Which makes them braver and more dangerous.

harrigran Sun 10-Feb-13 11:17:06

DD has the same problem in Brussels, the foxes jump the back wall and come right up to the patio doors. One evening she was returning home with a Thai meal and the hungry animal came right up to the carrier bag, sniffinf and licking it's lips.
Is it time to bring back fox hunting ?

gracesmum Sun 10-Feb-13 11:17:51

There was also the very sad story a couple of years ago I think, of a family labrador mauled to death by a fox. Being a friendly dog she had reacted in typical Lab fashion on encountering the fox in her garden- rolled over exposing her tummy, which the fox then ripped to shreds.
There is no denying that foxes can be very beautiful creatures - a vixen and her cubs a very "aaaah" sight - but they vermin and in many areas, I suspect seriously out of control, whatever the bunny huggers say.

j08 Sun 10-Feb-13 11:19:42

This morning, I definitely (almost) want to see fox hunting return. But I am sure pest control people could come up with something if they put their minds to it.

It's not that long since another two babies were mauled in their home. How many does it take?

harrigran Sun 10-Feb-13 11:19:47

That was a stupid comment harri of course we can't have the hounds and horses clattering down city streets.

j08 Sun 10-Feb-13 11:21:22

It must be so easy to just leave your door open while you pop out to the bin or grab some washing in.

nightowl Sun 10-Feb-13 11:23:40

I'm very sceptical about this story.

j08 Sun 10-Feb-13 11:28:06

As was a lot of people about the previous one. But nothing more was heard re any possible crime committed.

tanith Sun 10-Feb-13 11:28:44

I had that feeling too nightowl, I'll wait and see how the story develops.. whatever the truth what an awful thing to happen to the wee boy.

Tegan Sun 10-Feb-13 11:29:55

I think the human perception of foxes would rapidly change were we to have rabies in this country. I do find them incredibly beautiful and the only truly wild animal that any of us are ever likely to encounter. Many of the people I used to know that went hunting always used to say [and I found it difficult to believe at the time] that it was very rare for them to actually kill a fox. What the hunts did do [I assume] was manage the fox population in a gamekeeping sort of way. People round here, which is semi rural have said they are seeing far more foxes than usual.

gracesmum Sun 10-Feb-13 11:31:33

Why not harrigran? It would look great! But I can imagine a certain amount of chaos if the hounds were sidetracked by burgers in M&S or Sainsbury's grin !

Bags Sun 10-Feb-13 11:36:31

Didn't a misguided rabid bat fly through the Chunnel one? Was it caught?

j08 Sun 10-Feb-13 11:37:47

I will NOT kick up a fuss about any trivialisation of this thread. [nose in the air]

Galen Sun 10-Feb-13 11:47:57

Before I had a badger and fox proof fence put round my garden I often used to see both in my garden.
I do live at the edge of the town and have woods and fields within a few hundred yards.

gracesmum Sun 10-Feb-13 11:52:28

Oh dear - late onset dyslexia strikes again - I read that as a "misguided rabbi" grin

Seriously - if the fox population iin the countryside is increasing as a consequence of measures used which are less effective than fox-hunting used to be , there will be more (hungry) foxes chasing after the same amount of food. So some of them will gravitate into suburban then urban areas.. The urban fox problem is further aggravated by their absence of fear of humans and the possibility of meals on wheels - or at least meals on pavements and dare I suggest a level of misguided liberal squeamishness by the authorities about killing them?
There will be animal lovers up in arms at such action, but do they not see what the alternative is likely to be?

j08 Sun 10-Feb-13 11:53:57

We get a badger. Digs a hole in the same place each visit. Thinks it's thinking of moving in permanently.

Galen Sun 10-Feb-13 11:54:25

Join the Linda Snell brigade!

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