Foxes are everywhere in metropolitan Adelaide. You can find foxes more-so around cities than rural areas for the simple reason that city life suits them. This is because there is plenty of food and shelter in urban areas.
Foxes are an introduced and pest species in Australia.
Adelaide has a widespread population of them, and this is bad because they can:
As foxes have been around since the 1850s, most of our remaining native wildlife have adjusted to their presence, so eradicating foxes from our suburbs and cities is not realistic, we instead need to reduce their threat to native wildlife and our pets in metropolitan Adelaide.
Here’s five ways you can reduce the threat of foxes across Adelaide:
Foxes are good climbers and can climb pens. So the best way to protect your chickens from raids is to fox-proof them in a fully enclosed pen or coop. A fox-proof enclosure should be made from material that foxes cannot jump over, chew through or dig under.
Foxes living a city life become scavengers and feed on anything – rubbish, food left out for pets, even fruit that’s fallen from backyard trees.
Foxes don’t need much living space and can build a den under a house, or a quiet part of a neighbourhood. Things like wood piles, old tires and green waste make great homes for foxes.
When you feed native animals this makes them less wary of others and this includes being less wary for foxes. So keep those snacks at home.
You can help control foxes in metropolitan Adelaide by recording sightings in FoxScan. Anyone can use FoxScan to record information about foxes. Information you record can be used to manage foxes more effectively to reduce the damage they cause. The more information you record, the more useful FoxScan will become for fox management.
Some native animals can outfox a fox, like possums and native water rats.
Possums are known to race up tree tops and move around on rooves and power lines to keep safe. Whereas, native water rats (or rakali) keep safe by living in rivers and lakes and foxes prefer to stay dry.
Remember, though some may look cute, it’s illegal to keep foxes as pets in South Australia.
This story was originally published in May 2021.