Urban and country foxes can cause umpteen problems in neighbourhoods and country settings. Fox problems can be annoying at best and a serious health hazard at worst.
PROBLEMS CAUSED BY FOXES: As a rule, foxes are not removed by local councils. Fox species often cause problems by:
Foxes will cause problems for people in urban and country settings. So, what are the best methods for dealing with problems caused by foxes?
This guide highlights some steps to make your area less appealing to a fox. But, because many fox problems are different, there are several different ways of dealing with problems caused by foxes.
Removing their sources of food is one of the best ways to make your area unappealing to foxes. To deter them from living in your neighbourhood you should:
Note: Despite being illegal, fly-tipping litter can also attract foxes to visit your local neighbourhood.
The biggest problems caused by country foxes is the threat to livestock. Whereas, urban foxes create a threat of serious health hazards to you, your family, and to small pets.
That threat comes from any close physical contact with foxes and their waste products. The best way to protect your family is to set up barriers between you and fox diseases.
Some people think they are beautiful looking animal. But, the contagious diseases they carry, create a serious cause for concern.
Fox species are part of the canine family. There are 37 species of foxes. But only 12 species belong to the genus 'vulpes' (true foxes).
The best known would be the red fox, arctic fox, kit fox, fennec fox, and the grey fox. The common red fox is the only indigenous fox species in the United Kingdom. Even though they are genetically related to dogs, they cannot cross breed.
Red foxes are neither omnivore nor carnivore. They are 'canidae'. This means they mostly eat meat but they can also eat fruit and vegetables for energy. That also means they can adapt to most environments and breed in any situation (like humans). This is why they can survive in the countryside as well as urban areas.
Fact: Foxes carry many different germs and spread some hazardous diseases. This list explains some of the most serious parasites and diseases carried by foxes:
Note: Protect yourself against diseases caused by foxes. Make sure everyone washes their hands 'thoroughly' after working or playing in the garden.
There are different ways of dealing with fox problems in urban and country areas. As a rule, they get seen as pest control issues in urbanizations. Whereas, it becomes more of a vermin control problem in rural areas.
Controlling foxes in an urban area is a pest problem. They are officially considered as pests - not vermin. You can kill vermin to control the problems they cause. But, pests should be controlled and killing them should be the last resort.
Some people tolerated the country fox as vermin because they were part of fox hunting. Then it got banned in Scotland in 2003 and in England from 2005. Since then, farmers and landowners had the only option of controlling fox population by gassing and shooting. They use this as a fox vermin pest control measure.
You can use fox repellents to discourage fox species coming onto your property. Garden centers and hardware stores supply a variety of pellets and powders. But, all repellents must have HSE approval.
An example would be a chemical containing aluminium ammonium sulphate. You do not need a wildlife licence to use these types of fox repellent.
If you find a fox's den it is illegal to block them in. Dens are often under houses and sheds. The foxes will usually leave their den after they finish rearing their cubs.
As a rule, the den will be empty from June to November. That is a good time to block their access for the following season. You can also try placing new objects in and around the near vacinity if they do not leave the lair. Foxes do not like changes close to their dens.
Note: Report a dead fox or animal to the local council. You can report an injured fox to the RSPCA in England and Wales. Do not try to help an injured fox unless you have training to do so. They are wild animals and foxes will attack humans if they feel cornered.
Fox Problems: How to Deal with Hazards caused by Foxes in the United Kingdom