Thursday, 9 October 2008

For Fox Sake

UPDATE: The Worcester Park Blog is setting the news agenda once again with The Sutton Guardian running a half-page story on the fox issue and the debate raging on this fair blog. See page 9 of this week's Sutton Guardian - and do continue to add your comments to the original article below!



I'm fed up with it - the screaming at night, bins being tipped over, turds left on the lawn. With locals behaving like that, it's a wonder the foxes haven't upped and left Worcester Park.

But our four-legged furry fiends are in plentiful supply. So surely nobody would feed and encourage these vermin?

Well, Sutton Council is more than happy for you to do so, according to the fox Q&A page on their website:

"Should I feed the foxes?

If you want to, yes; there is absolutely no reason why you should not feed them, and many people derive a great deal of pleasure from feeding the foxes in their garden. But do not feel that you have to feed them because otherwise they will be short of food. This is not true."


Proof according to the anonymous e-mailer who sent me this anonymous tip off (not terribly anonymously because her name shows in the 'From' field of the e-mail) that Sutton Council is "made up of total loonies, who appear to give more rights to smelly foxes than humans".

Not sure I would go that far, but I certainly wouldn't feed the foxes.

Would you?

31 COMMENTS (Add Yours Now!):

Ian Morris said...

I fed a fox a chav once. Is that acceptable?

Stephan said...

It probably had to go and eat some cat crap to get rid of the taste.

My neighbour feeds the foxes. They then normally go and crap on my lawn(ish) straight after which is nice. Nothing like fox doodoo on my slippers to cheer me up in the morning.

sc said...

No I wouldn't. The little shetbags are also scraping up my lawn for some reason (well it's either a fox or a psychotic neighbor).

Anonymous said...

No I would not feed them - intentionally anyway.

They seem to get enough food from me when I forget to put the bin bag in the bin - and then leave nice deposits on my door mat for me to tread in when I am picking up the previous days potato peelings of the front lawn.

Happy days! :)

Claire said...

I always find it irritating when humans, who do more damage to the environment than any other animal that has ever existed on this planet, get so irritated at the proximity of wildlife (which, let's face it, was present long before human habitation came to Worcester Park). Personally, I get more upset at the shrieking of drunken chavs in my street in the early hours and the empty beer cans they shove into my hedge in passing. In defence of the fox, I volunteer at London Wildcare in Beddington where I often see foxes terribly injured by cars, dogs, starvation and human cruelty. Most have a short and brutal life in the wild, rarely surviving to their second birthday. I'm happy to leave the odd scrap of left-over cat food out for my local fox late at night rather than letting it go to waste. I can live with the odd turd on the lawn as it hardly ranks as a "problem" for us privileged people in Worcester Park when, for example, millions across the globe are denied access to clean drinking water. Sorry if this comes across as high-handed but I get so annoyed at the ill-informed attitudes of some!

Anonymous said...

But when that odd turd means that you have to check your garden lawn before letting your toddlers out to play it is more than just a "problem".

What irritates me is people like you that play the environment and third world cards in a simple debate about feeding foxes in surrey.

And I hope that its not your cat that takes dumps in my garden too!

Anonymous said...

I'm with you on this one claire ........

Anonymous said...

Shoot em... shoot em all... they are nothing but vermin who crap all over my garden and dig the lawn up looking for grubs... and thats just the enviromenalists !!!.. as for the foxes.. shoot them too.

Claire said...

Re toddlers - If you read the fox Q&A bit in the Sutton Council website mentioned, you will see that there have been NO cases of children catching toxocariasis from foxes (unlike from domestic dogs). My parents never fretted about foxes (even though we had loads of foxes living in allotments behind our old house) and neither me nor my siblings (or the neighbours kids) ever caught any illnesses (except from other kids at school!). It is essential to pass on to the next generation positive attitudes towards the wildlife on our doorstep (which has an undeniable right to exist on our doorstep). To teach children that wild animals are just "vermin" or disease-ridden threats to them is to perpetuate the idea that humans are somehow "separate" from our natural environmental - exactly the sort of belief that has led to global warming, pollution and hunger in the third world. You might not think that it is relevant to a debate about feeding foxes but it actually is.

(And incidentally, my cats use their indoor litter tray.)

Ian Morris said...

We have foxes living directly behind our place in an alley way. Ive not once found a fox crap in my lawn, and even if I did its not like its particularly hard for it to be removed.

jaybeeuk said...

I never once suggested that we should have negative attitudes towards the wildlife on our doorstep, but I do feel that feeding some wild animals is not the right thing to do - do you feed the pigeons in Kingston town centre?

You mention that foxes "have a short and brutal life in the wild, rarely surviving to their second birthday" - surely feeding them will encourage them to stay in urban areas and be more likely to suffer injuries sustained by cars or human cruelty.

Michael said...

I wonder if you fox feeders will keep the same attitude to support 'local doorstep wildlife' and continue to feed the hoards of rats that will eventually accumulate around your houses. Hypocrites!

I bet you all voted to stop fox hunting too. Next it will be ban fishing and animal farming. Then finally not allowed to dig in the garden for fear of harming the legally protected worms. Get a life!

We humans dominate the earth for now. Eventually mother earth will 'do its thing' and another species will dominate. Do we criticise any animals for 'ruling the earth' like the dinosaurs? No, we actually look at them with admiration and praise them as wonders of the world. So get a life and exploit the world as much as you can until we make ourselves extinct. ALL the dominant capable animals would do just the same given the chance!

...and don't even think to start me off on religion!!

Anonymous said...

I think Michael needs to see some sort of psychotherapist

Anonymous said...

If Claire is worried about drunken chavs throwing beer cans into her hedge, I suggest she moves away from Browning Avenue.......

Anonymous said...

Ian Morris, you say fox crap is not difficult to remove, but I beg to differ, its nasty, sticky,tarry, greasy, stuff and does not either wash off easily, or pick up in one piece. In fact if i knew it wasnt daft i would swear they deliberatly stomp it in!
and Claire, I adore wildlife too, but these foxes are becoming just too comfortable with their easy pickings urban lifestyle, and coming too close for comfort. After all if you came across any other 'wild' animal, it would not daringly saunter up to you looking for food (unless you yourself looked like a likely source of a good meal if it was a large enough meat eating predator)
Having said all that, half the reason these poor creatures crap almost straight after eating anything that happen to scavenge is that the food they find either disgarded or left for them, is not the sort of thing they would discover in their natural habitat and so is causing them upset stomachs. so for all concerned BEST NOT TO FEED THE FOX

Ian Morris said...

People I think we have all lost sight of the real problem here and that is the Hamptons!! We were all much happier moaning about how much we despise them and since we have stopped argueing about them we've now begun to turn on nature and in particular our furry orange friends. The foxes were here long before the hamptons were, and they don't cause any conjestion problems. So lets all stop having a go at the foxes and turn our venom back onto the Hamptons again.

Anonymous said...

hear hear

Kfc said...

It is acceptable to feed fox Chavs, but only if the are Hampton Chavs.

Michael said...

@ Anonymous said. 'I think Michael needs to see some sort of psychotherapist'

omg, I think you need to look up the words Humour and sarcasm.
Geesh... obviously from the educated part of Wooskester Park

Anonymous said...

Easy tiger

Anonymous said...

Just a quick point to Claire, isn't one of the most important points in caring for wild animals making sure that it is done so in a manner that doesn't infringe on their natural behaviour, surely feeding them just encourages their dependancy on humans?

This is no difference to the Chavs on browning avenue, surely we should stop the government handouts and force them back to their natural behaviour of burgling, fighting and wearing as much England football garments as possible?

Also the same should be said of the Hamptons residents, this current debate is detracting them from their Daily mail reading, campaigning for the Marks and spencer food hall to reopen and general keeping up of appearances

Chicken Chop Snr. said...

I left my gardening shoes out one night and the fox shat in them.

reynard said...

i think we should resurect the Worcester Park fox hunt as in days of old ,to get rid of the vermin.
and have the meetings start at the Huntsmans Hall.

Anonymous said...

I still say shoot em...

Anonymous said...

START WITH SHOOTIN ALL AT HUNTSMAN!

Drew Peacock said...

Stupid like a FOX!

Anonymous said...

For all those city types who helped bring in the fox hunting ban, now you see why the fox pop has to be kept down. Why can't one of the local riding schools set up a fox hunt in WP?

Anonymous said...

Love the Homer Simpson reference

The Parkerilla said...

I certainly wouldn't encourage them what with keeping me awake all night with their endless corny jokes and cries of "boom boom " and "c'mon Mister Derek"

John said...

So long as no one objects to me riding through their back gardens, going for a Sunday Jaunt, I promise to de-chav as well as FOx Hunt all at once.

I mean, they're both useless in the grand scheme of things aren't they? Chavs bring beery slurring problems and Foxes bring infestation and Mange (according to the Sutton site) which when you think about it, are both foaming at the mouth diseases. I shall inform the Hunt this week, that anything in Burberry drinking cheap cider or scavenging in bins (again both applies) are fair game.

Tally ho!

Mister Derek said...

I'd rather you didn't, Parkerilla. I'm flattered but that sort of thing really ain't my bag.

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