Forest Hill's Foxes


Predation is defined as a relation between animals in which one organism captures and feeds on others.
Maybe a fox curry would be some tastes but not mine. Let’s not mince words - humans do not predate on foxes - we just plain kill them - for good or bad.

There is also this myth of the killing frenzy. I say myth really because of the frenzy as they do of course kill. Frenzy is just more anthropomorphic rhetoric - what foxes do is what a lot of predators do - Surplus killing. Cats do it too as do our beloved dogs.


No one. I was just pointing out that taking that position with no acknowledgement that there are problems (and virtues) associated with both foxes and pets would be foolish. In which case, I’m sure no one here DOES think that. Right?


When I looked up “predation” I got this:


  1. the preying of one animal on others.
    “an effective defence against predation”
  2. the action of attacking or plundering.
    “the old story of male predation and female vulnerability”


Agreed. And likewise, earlier, I was just pointing out:

Not reductive. Just a statement.


Yes this is all possible but also extremely rare.

In addition mange is very easy to successfully treat and there would be no need for a dog to die in an “agonising way” as you put it, if they even get it in the first place. This is sensationalism on your part.

You cannot demonise an animal or justify a hatred or killing of them because of the above. It that were true I could spend all day demonising cats, dogs and birds and many other animals.

These types of sensationalist attitudes are all to common in my work in swift conservation and this can be highly damaging to many species and undermines the hard effort that goes into protecting them.

Newspapers like to sensationalise and whip up emotional frenzy and many fall prey to it.


It seemed reasonable to view that statement as a reduction of my position given it came at the end of a post in which you addressed me directly with a tag. If it was a more general statement addressed to the wider readership, then my apologies.

Bet you’re wishing I’d kept my modding hat on now. :wink:


I understand your position, and I’m just trying to illustrate why some people might hate foxes (personally, I don’t hate them - I just dislike people encouraging them into urban areas where they cause damage, disease and nuisance).

The point about attitudes and conservation is an interesting one. My sister is a marine biologist and conservationist.

When she led a ecology project out in Belize, one of the key priorities of her project was to reduce the population of lionfish. Lionfish are an invasive, poisonous species that had overrun local populations of fish and marine life, causing multiple extinctions, and generally hurting biodiversity and fish stock. So part of my sister’s work was educating local people about the problems caused by lionfish, arranging for them to be culled, and also teaching local people how to remove the lionfish spines so that they could be safely cooked and eaten.

Basically, “demonising” (as you put it) the lionfish.

This was a difficult remit for an ardent vegetarian and do-no-harm type like my sister. But she recognised it was vital to preserve other life, and to redress a natural balance.


Yes, I can see that and of course there are species that can be damaging and control is needed for biodiversity purposes - much like deer for forest regeneration and habitat creation for capercaillie and wild cats in Scotland. I just don’t think urban foxes fall into that category.
However, there are cases where rural foxes do fall into this category and this is in the case of foxes predating on rare ground nesting birds on some RSPB reserves, where measures have been taken to control them, to protect these birds.

Foxes have been spreading into urban areas since after the second world war and there are now thought to be up to 10,000 foxes in London alone. Whilst there is more food here, that has always been the case and experts believe this is more down to the way suburbs have trailed out in to the countryside between both world wars, providing the perfect habitat for foxes. So I don’t think people have intentionally encouraged them into our cities. It seems they are here to stay and maybe we should find a way of getting along with them or at least tolerating them. I believe most of the common grievances against them are easily remedied so hopefully we can live in harmony.

I appreciate being able to have a good mature discussion Chris, so thank you :slight_smile:



mmm foxes - yummy.





They’re native to the U.K., but not to towns and cities:


Very good article.


Lots of great photos of foxes at the Horniman:


Lovely, I must go and visit.


Two fox stories from SNARL (South Norwood Animal Rescue and Liberty -who have been heavily involved in the cat killer investigation) this week:

The first a fox found on Saturday in Warlingham thought to sadly be the victim of the cat killer

The second a poorly fox they rescued today found cowering on someone’s front doorstep in West Norwood


A few weeks ago I found a poorly fox in my garden with a bad case of mange. I had heard that if you contact the National Fox Welfare Society and fill out an online form they send you free mange treatment. So I did that but it didn’t arrive and the mange was getting worse. I read up a bit more about it and found out that mange will kill a fox if left untreated within four months, and it won’t be pleasant. I was also worried as it was very cold and I wasn’t sure the fox would be able to regulate his temperature with a big bald patch.

I was pointed to the Mama Cat Trust - a London charity who deals with cat and fox rescue. I sent them pictures and they were great and came out and gave me the medicine straight away, which you slip in a jam sandwich. Two doses are needed 10 days apart. The fox has now had both doses and three weeks later his fur has started to slowly grow back and it looks much less sore.

So if you see a fox with mange no matter how small, please contact Mama Cat Trust who will help. You will save its life.


Also Mama Cat Trust are always looking for fox rescue volunteers and have monthly meetings to find out what it is about. I will be starting next year along with training how to rehabilitate swifts!


Excellent fur re-growth now!


Definitely not :slight_smile: