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Fox In The Garden!


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On Sunday afternoon, there was a fox in my garden, and judging by the feathers today, I think she's been back. What sort of risk do you think this runs for my childminding business? Do you think that the very hint of children in the garden would be enough to scare her off? I know there was an incident last year where a fox attacked twin girls, but I still wonder if the risk for supervised children is that great?

 

Your thoughts please.

 

Honey

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Hi Honeypancakes,

 

Could you speak to Childminding Network development worker? or call NCMA or Morten Michel and see what advice they give?

 

Carol x

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Not sure that they don't pose a risk...............foxes can be very bold when they want to be and as it appears to have found food ( a bird) in your garden, it's likely to be back. We had one who for years used our garden as a shortcut to fields up behind us, where he could enjoy a great snack of birds! I'd phone your local council pest control officer for advice, see what they suggest, or maybe RSPCA, they might be able to set a human trap. I'd also phone your insurers, to seek their advice.

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I'm so glad that you received some good responses........your post has been 'worrying' me since I read it this afternoon.

 

I live in the country and it is fairly unusual to see a fox - well I haven't seen many.......when I have, they have been very timid and have immediately run away........and I'm not scary :o

 

Isn't there a theory that 'town' foxes are no longer frightened by 'humans' and that has changed their behaviour? Of course, you might not live in a town......

 

Have to say that I agree with narnia - think that I would be ringing the RSPCA.......I would hate to think that it would have to be destroyed.......a humane trap sounds a much better option.......

 

I seem to remember that in addition to the awful case with the twins there has been another situation at a nursery where a child put his hand under a shed and was bitten

 

Better safe than sorry would be my motto here.

 

Good luck - do let us know what you decide.......

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Thanks so much All.

 

Prob be a few weeks (she writes hopefully) until we are out in the garden so some time to plan. I am in the suburbs, but lots of green space around and the nearby train line is fox heaven I think.

 

Plan of action - call insurers, Call RSPCA (although I'd rather change our behaviour and environment than the fox's). Check behind shed and playhouse and under deck before taking children off the deck.

 

And I think I'll ask the local head teach and see what she thinks of the local risk.

 

Many thanks again,

 

Honey

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Strangely enough we are in a similar situation.

 

Nursery is on the school site and we have a small shared conservation area and a member of staff told me a fox had been spotted there and now we are not allowed to use the area!

 

I do not want to harm or upset the fox but am also mindful of just how long it has taken to get this area up and running and the children love being out there....... maybe I too will talk to the Head and then contact RSPCA.

 

If he/ she is in there they have found themselves into the midst of an estate...... maybe unsure how to get out again!!!!

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Guest jenpercy

I wouldn't worry too much - I think this is over reaction. we live backing on to allotments and I can hear them nights but we rarely see them. chances are that most of have had foxes in the garden without knowing as they are nocturnal.

 

the main food of urban foxes is stuff from dustbins - wehich is why there are more of them than in the country - but they eat earthworms and all sorts of stuff.

 

the feathers are just as likely, if not more to be from a cat kill.

 

If you check under sheds and decking for access for dens. if foxes are actually living in your garden, you should be able to watch for them coming out at night. If you are pretty sure there is nothing there - block up all holes and don't worry. you could always check garden before chilldren go out.

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In fact, foxes are just as likely to be out in the day time, their behaviour patterns are changing with easier access to food etc. I don't think it's over-reacting to take advice that ensures the children's safety? They do of course eat all kinds of stuff, including worms, frogs, birds etc as well as food scavenged from bins. But, if I had one in my garden and I was childminding, I'd take some professional advice, even if it's simply to clear myself insurance wise.....................part of my risk assessments, I'd say? Check you fencing too, but of course foxes can climb and dig, but just make sure that, if foxy can get IN, your children can't get out :o Personally, I love foxes, and wouldn't want to see them destroyed, so the humane option of asking RSPCA for advice would be my preferred option for moving it away. In the end though, it's about keeping the children safe...

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I really wouldn't worry. I childminded for years knowing that a fox went through my garden every night. As long as you check the garden for faeces each day as part of your daily risk assessment before the children go out (which I'm sure you do), and as long as you are there and children are not left unsupervised (which I'm sure they're not), then I really don't see a problem. Foxes are everywhere, and as a previous poster already said, many of us probably have them going through our garden without realising it, as they are mainly nocturnal.

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