Pest Control – Foxes
Although foxes are nocturnal they can often be seen in the day. Foxes are territorial and they live in small family groups generally they survive for only 2 years.
What do they look like?
Adult foxes are red/brown in colour, the male is usually larger than the female and can weigh up to 7Kg.
Where do they live?
Foxes inhabit the external environment and will not infest houses like rats or mice. Foxes are normally found in woodland areas and on farmland, but are becoming increasingly common in urban areas.
What do they eat?
Urban foxes will eat earthworms, insects, small mammals, birds and household food scraps. They will often bury food to prevent other animals from taking it and to store for times when food is scarce.
Foxes are a native species which form a natural and important part of our environment. Many people welcome their presence and enjoy seeing them and they also provide a service as a top predator of rats, feral pigeons etc. In some cases foxes could be classed as a nuisance pest by causing damage to gardens and property, in these situations some form of control may be necessary. Foxes will not usually attack domestic pets, such as cats and dogs but the cages of smaller pets, such as rabbits and guinea pigs should be securely fastened to discourage foxes. Foxes are not classed as a public health risk.
Foxes will scavenge food, so domestic food waste should not be easily available. Bin bags and waste should be stored in a suitable receptacle to block easy access, access to areas containing food and pet food should also be blocked. Ensure overgrown areas and accumulations of rubbish and rubble do not build up, as this will encourage foxes to stay in your garden. To stop access to your garden secure fencing and block any gaps.
Foxes can be trapped or snared but only by a professional pest contractor. Foxes can not be poisoned under the legislation ‘Protection of Animals Act 1911’. If you want to employ a private company to treat the problem for you, you should try to ensure that they are members of the British Pest Control Association. Details of companies can be found in the Yellow Pages or Thomson Directories. These private companies will charge for carrying out any treatment.