Are Urban Foxes Dangerous?
Wild foxes are usually wary of people, but those living in urban areas are more confident. The main reason for this is that foxes are scavengers, and they’ll readily venture into areas where food is available. This ‘food’ can include small animals, but are urban foxes dangerous to us?
Why Foxes Venture Into Urban Areas
It’s mainly the availability of food that attracts foxes into urban areas. Their natural diet is usually worms, insects, fruits, birds, and small mammals. But in urban areas, they can get access to discarded takeaway food, household rubbish, bird seeds, and pet food that’s been left out.
Another big attraction of urban areas for foxes is that there are plenty of place to shelter and make a den. They like garden shrubs, sheds, and dense vegetation.
So Are Urban Foxes Dangerous?
Let’s look at the main problems foxes cause when they make their way into urban areas.
They are noisy
Ever heard a really loud screaming noise at night and been ready to call the police? Then you glance out of the window and see two foxes. That awful screaming noise is either a mating cry or the sound males foxes make when they are fighting each other over territory or a female.
Thankfully, foxes breed just once each year. The breeding season begins in January and cubs are usually born around late March.
They are messy
If foxes get at your bin bags, they’ll rip them open in their search for food. You’ll wake up to see your rubbish strewn all over your lawn or the street.
Foxes are a risk to small pets…but not to us
This is what most people want to know when they ask the question are urban foxes dangerous? Attacks on humans are very rare. Foxes by nature are scared of humans, but like many other animals, they will attack if they feel cornered or afraid.
When it comes to pets, you might want to make sure small birds, guinea pigs, rabbits, and chickens are kept somewhere secure. Foxes will attack and kill these types of animals if they get the chance. They don’t tend to fancy their chances against cats and dogs however.
They carry diseases
This is one way that urban foxes are dangerous to humans and our pets. Some diseases they carry are:
Toxocariasis- Foxes carry a parasite that can cause blindness in children.
Fleas and ticks – Your pets can pick them up from playing in the garden where a fox has been. Once these pests get into your home, they can be very challenging to get rid of.
How To Keep Foxes Away From Your Home And Garden
As with most pests, the way to deter them is to make your home and garden less attractive to them. You can do this by:
· Keeping your bins securely shut and not leaving bin bags lying around;
· Not leaving pet food out in the garden;
· Clearing clutter from your garden which they could hide in;
· Making sure there’s no food on your compost heap.
Urban Fox Control-What The Law Says You Can Do
If foxes are causing a nuisance on your property, you might be tempted to take things into your own hands. You might think about trying to trap or poison them. That would be a bad move.
Foxes are protected under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. You can be jailed for up to 6 months and fined up to £5,000 if you harm a fox. Then there’s the fact that in trying to get rid of your fox problem, you might cause harm to other wildlife or a neighbour’s pet which can also land you in trouble.
Fox control is a specialist area of pest control, so the only legal way to get rid of your problem is to call in the professionals. Professional technicians who are trained in wildlife management have the expertise and products at their disposal which will allow them to control foxes legally.
Urban Foxes Causing a Nuisance? Call Contego.
At Contego, we offer targeted, effective, and legal fox control solutions. From trapping to fox proofing, and repellents, we offer humane solutions as part of a wildlife management programme.
Whether foxes are causing a nuisance or widespread destruction, we can help you protect your property and your pets.
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