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at what point do I do something-foxes *update*:(

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  • at what point do I do something-foxes *update*:(

    I have this family of foxes around the barn who are increasingly becoming more brazen. Some are clearly young. Tonight I was doing a night check/last round of hay when two of them came into the paddock. I stood there watching them until they got within ten feet of me and one of the horses. Then I shooed it. It just kind of scooted and off. They are very cute, and I am usually of the philosophy to leave animals be if they aren't bothering anyone. They are just so comfortable. Should I be concerned?
    Last edited by 2boys; Jun. 17, 2010, 07:36 PM.

  • #2
    I doubt they'd hurt you or the horses. But why are they attracted to your farm? Do you have chickens, or something else that might make good fox nummies?

    We have lots of foxes around here, but I've yet to see them near my barn. I'd wonder if they suddenly started hanging around.
    I'm not ignoring the rules. I'm interpreting the rules. Tamal, The Great British Baking Show

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      Nope, just a horse and little pony. I saw one trot through the paddock with a squirrel in his mouth the other day.

      Comment


      • #4
        We have a fox who spends a lot of time at our barn and in our back yard. For years, we were plagued with mice and rats. We have now been rodent free for the couple of years that we have had the fox. Enjoy your foxes. After a while, I think the youngsters will move out into their own territories.

        Do be aware that foxes can get rabies if you have a rabies outbreak in your area. Also, they can get mange. If yours have mange (missing hair, lots of scratching) talk with a wildlife rehabber to see if they can treat it with low dose liquid ivermectin.

        Comment


        • #5
          Enjoy them.

          They are feeding their young right now, and are teaching them the ways of the world.

          There is probably a den nearby and they're just stopping by to pay you a visit.

          Don't feed them, don't encourage them, and do everything you can to keep them wild. You're not being mean, you're doing them a favor. So chasing them off, or yelling to scare them - that's a good thing.

          The young will leave home permanently at the end of summer, and strike out to find their own territory.

          There is always the possibility that a fox carries rabies, but it is normal for a fox to be out during the day, so don't let that scare you. An animal that is head pressing, staggering, comes close and stares at you dumbly, lists to one side, or is acting violent yeah - that should concern you.
          Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
          Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
          -Rudyard Kipling

          Comment


          • #6
            Yup...completely normal for fox to be curious, playful and out during the day.
            If you don't have anything they eat, I wouldn't worry about it. Have fun watching them.
            Maybe get a trampoline?
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c8xJtH6UcQY
            They don't even need friends to have fun:
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IdPI5...eature=related

            having fox around is like having a group of ADHD children, except the fox are a tad smarter.
            You jump in the saddle,
            Hold onto the bridle!
            Jump in the line!
            ...Belefonte

            Comment


            • #7
              OMG!! They are so cute jumping around! I have foxes around here too, but I am lucky to catch a glimpse of them much less see them do anything funny! Lucky you!!!
              Check us out on Facebook at EVER AFTER FARM

              Comment


              • #8
                <sigh> The only thing I find on our trampoline is the cat.

                I wouldn't worry about the foxes either. My sister has had one that lives near her house and it has made friends with her dog. It will sit at the top of the yard and call for her dog to come out. Then they play a came of chase until they are both tired and the dog comes in & the fox heads home.

                She keeps an eye on it so if it ever looks mangy she can treat it. There was another one in the neighborhood that had mange and died before they could get it treated. Very sad.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I helped a friend move some plants in her yard one summer. She has always had a den of fox in her back fields and you would see them from a distance. Well, one day I was working and got that "feeling" - turned around and a young fox was sitting, watching me work. The first day I kept an eye on it but after a while it was routine for it to come supervise my work for a while and then trot off to do something else.

                  My friend later told me that after I had finished the project, the fox came back a couple more times "looking" for me and then didn't come back up to the house after that -

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    OMG! The trampoline is awesome! They do seem very playful and curious. I caught one chasing a squirrel one day and he just kept going around in circles around a tree. He easily could have caught it, but would clearly rather have played. One of the crazy things is how comfortable my horses are with them around. The baby is very cute. Thanks for the words of wisdom!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      OMG! I have to get a trampoline for my foxes!

                      I've been on the farm for 20 yrs and have always had foxes around. Sometimes, if it's raining, I'll go in the barn and they exit quickly from the hay pile and I always find 'present's they leave for my dog. The 'presents' have ranged from a deer leg a few winters ago to a nice chunk of deer hide in the back yard.

                      They are incredibly cute and very curious. I've seen them sitting at the edge of the property just watching the dog and me. Foxy seems to realize that my dog can't come over to where he's sitting (Invisible fence for dog).

                      I just mowed the back pasture and found a fawn's front leg. Don't know where the other 3 legs are but I'm guessing Foxy might have had a good meal though. I don't begrudge Foxy, but I love the little fawns. I should be happy as we are overrun with deer and that will be one less but it's still sad.

                      Interestingly, I had problems with a young fox a short time ago. He decided to dig a deep and wide hole over the grave of a horse I had buried last December. Since it was in a pasture that I rotate the horses into I didn't need a leg-breaking hole. I wasn't sure if he was trying to make a new den or what but I filled the hole with medium to large rocks and that slowed him down. Then another COTHer brought over about a pint of her male Great Dane's urine to help deter him from digging. He did come back after a couple of days but didn't do much damage so I'm guessing the urine and rocks might have convinced him to dig elsewhere. But I'm wondering if after he dug the hole if he didn't try to bury the remains of the fawn. I did just spread a bit of top soil over the grave and put down a ton of grass seed and plan to water this week and next and hope I get some grass started before foxy comes back.
                      Sue

                      I'm not saying let's go kill all the stupid people...I'm just saying let's remove all the warning labels and let the problem sort itself out.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        LOL, you gotta love an equine BB community where your friends will happily deliver a Pint Of Puppy Pee to you!

                        I don't know what it is with fox and trampolines, there's tons of videos on youtube of different fox playing on trampolines. Since they love to do ambush jumps, they probably just find those on a trampoline are a lot more fun. And they will check everything out in your yard...I wouldn't be surprised to find them swinging on a swing set, LOL!
                        You jump in the saddle,
                        Hold onto the bridle!
                        Jump in the line!
                        ...Belefonte

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I’m enjoying the fox family we have here as well!
                          I wasn’t trilled to find cat fur all over the aisle… & later come across the severed head of a feral kitten. Now the Kits are flexing their muscles, thinking they could maybe take on my Barn cat. They’ll get some shock if they try! She's not worried.
                          "Dressage" is just a fancy word for flatwork

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            I believe there may be sad news to report. Last night we had heard a fox running like crazy through the neighborhood, and I chalked it up to maybe mating calls. Well, this afternoon when I was coming home from the grocery store, I saw a young fox squished in the road. It was probably 200 yards from my house. It looked just like my little friend-red with pretty black points. I hope to see the little critter at barn check tonight, but am very concerned.

                            As a follow up to msj's post, since these guys seem to be snacking on deer, should I be worried about my 11 hand pony? They are out 24/7.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Oh No! I hope the squished fox isn't your little friend. I hate it when I see a dead fox on the side of the road.

                              I think your pony is safe from the fox - I believe it is only the tiny fawns that a fox can take down. I've never heard of one going after a pony or a mini for that matter.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Don't worry about your pony. The fox are scavenging deer kills. They're not preying on large animals.

                                I'd be more concerned about coyote - if you have them in your area.

                                I'm sorry about the fox. In summer and early fall you'll often see a lot more roadkill. It's often youngsters either striking out to find territory, or just wandering and exploring on their own.

                                Sorry he didn't make it.

                                Originally posted by 2boys View Post
                                I believe there may be sad news to report. Last night we had heard a fox running like crazy through the neighborhood, and I chalked it up to maybe mating calls. Well, this afternoon when I was coming home from the grocery store, I saw a young fox squished in the road. It was probably 200 yards from my house. It looked just like my little friend-red with pretty black points. I hope to see the little critter at barn check tonight, but am very concerned.

                                As a follow up to msj's post, since these guys seem to be snacking on deer, should I be worried about my 11 hand pony? They are out 24/7.
                                Brothers and sisters, I bid you beware
                                Of giving your heart to a dog to tear.
                                -Rudyard Kipling

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by 2boys View Post
                                  I believe there may be sad news to report. Last night we had heard a fox running like crazy through the neighborhood, and I chalked it up to maybe mating calls. Well, this afternoon when I was coming home from the grocery store, I saw a young fox squished in the road. It was probably 200 yards from my house. It looked just like my little friend-red with pretty black points. I hope to see the little critter at barn check tonight, but am very concerned.

                                  As a follow up to msj's post, since these guys seem to be snacking on deer, should I be worried about my 11 hand pony? They are out 24/7.
                                  Oh so sorry to hear about the fox. I do hope it wasn't yours.

                                  You shouldn't have to worry about them going after your pony. The fawn leg I found was a very young one. Quite possibly the one that I've chased up when I've been mowing. Both times I saw the fawn it got away without getting hurt. My pastures aren't ever allowed to get long enough to hide the fawns in but the mother's do put them under the low branches of the pine trees.
                                  Sue

                                  I'm not saying let's go kill all the stupid people...I'm just saying let's remove all the warning labels and let the problem sort itself out.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by rmh_rider
                                    On the subject of foxes, umm, ok, I will ask it. The subject IS on foxes.

                                    What does their "scat" look like?

                                    I am finding some really dark "scat" near my barn. Seems "somebody" is leaving their calling card(s) in the same places, all the time.

                                    It is dark "scat", really black looking. It has various "things" in it. I have for sure seen persimmon seeds in it. Whomever it is seems like like to mark their stuff in the same general location. I saw it - the "scat" on some horse poo in the pasture.

                                    I am hoping it is not a dreaded skunk, possum, or coon. I would prefer it to be a fox. Last fall we saw two grey foxes, and we are very pro-fox. We love what they do for the unwanted critters around here. We have no chickens no cats. 2 dogs 3 horses lots and lots of birds 15A.

                                    Anybody be able to answer this?

                                    Thanks!
                                    I've been told that the dark manure like your describing, with VERY VISIBLE seeds in it, is raccoon feces. The slimmer and more like diarrhea manure is fox or cat. I've seen plenty of fox and cat this year and no coon so I'm happy about that.

                                    But to be honest, I'm waiting for MistyBlue to pipe up with a more interesting description.
                                    Sue

                                    I'm not saying let's go kill all the stupid people...I'm just saying let's remove all the warning labels and let the problem sort itself out.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Here I am...need a poop id?

                                      Fox scat is a dark tarry scat. Usually a very dark brown to black. It's either elongated and shaped like a pill capsule or thinner and twisty, depending on whether they've had small animals or larger animals. Small animals they eat the bones so the scat is more like a capsule..shaped like someone's thumb and about the same size as a small adult's thumb. The longer twisty ones are from eating a scavenged larger carcass or any animal big enough that the fox doesn't crunch them whole. If there isn't "foreign" matter in the scat like bones or fruit pits then the poop doesn't come out formed. Foreign undigestable stuff makes the colon form more of a capsule or long pellet shape. And it's very dark. Fox tend to leave poops in a row, line or curve.

                                      Raccoon poop is about the same shape and color, but smaller and left in a small pile that looks like tiny piled logs. About the size of a child's pinky finger.

                                      Both scat can have just about anything in it. Fox love berries and fruit as much as coons do. You can tell the difference because of the size of the scat and how it was left. (pile or not)

                                      Possums...they poop a medium brown color, also in capsule/regular poop shape and usually also in a pile. Each poop will have a flat broken off looking end usually. And each poop has "segments" or sections...little lines.

                                      Sad to sit here and type out the description of poops!

                                      I do hope it wasn't "your" fox OP. I just got back in the house from trying to break up a nasty deer fight. I have the windows open and heard a fawn yelling/bleating LOUD close to the house and lots of crashing noises. Of course I ran out with a flashlight expecting to find a predator...but turned out to be the normal deer fight. Didn't see the one who caused it...heard it crash off and snort. Either doe or buck...couldn't tell. Then momma doe jumps out of the woods on the slop behind my house and and tries jumping away and leading me off...big snorts to keep me following. Went the other way...found a fawn down, only thing moving was the breathing. Scooped it and headed for the house but it didn't make it that far. Darn other deer crushed the top of it's skull with a hoof. They might look cute, but deer can be really nasty to each other. Could've been a doe or buck.
                                      I was going to put it back in the woods in an area where I monitor predators...but Mr Blue saw it and got the tractor and drove into the woods with the headlights on in the pitch dark and dug a grave. He's a sweet sweet man. Misguided a bit about nature, but very sweet. It's now in a shallow grave and I'm near the window waiting to hear the predators show up to dig it back up again. I won't tell Mr Blue though.
                                      You jump in the saddle,
                                      Hold onto the bridle!
                                      Jump in the line!
                                      ...Belefonte

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        Originally posted by MistyBlue View Post
                                        I do hope it wasn't "your" fox OP. I just got back in the house from trying to break up a nasty deer fight. I have the windows open and heard a fawn yelling/bleating LOUD close to the house and lots of crashing noises. Of course I ran out with a flashlight expecting to find a predator...but turned out to be the normal deer fight. Didn't see the one who caused it...heard it crash off and snort. Either doe or buck...couldn't tell. Then momma doe jumps out of the woods on the slop behind my house and and tries jumping away and leading me off...big snorts to keep me following. Went the other way...found a fawn down, only thing moving was the breathing. Scooped it and headed for the house but it didn't make it that far. Darn other deer crushed the top of it's skull with a hoof. They might look cute, but deer can be really nasty to each other. Could've been a doe or buck.
                                        I was going to put it back in the woods in an area where I monitor predators...but Mr Blue saw it and got the tractor and drove into the woods with the headlights on in the pitch dark and dug a grave. He's a sweet sweet man. Misguided a bit about nature, but very sweet. It's now in a shallow grave and I'm near the window waiting to hear the predators show up to dig it back up again. I won't tell Mr Blue though.
                                        So sad.

                                        Comment

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