- Foxes may move around in the daytime, but they are most active in the early hours of dark and in the morning.
- Foxes are omnivores, meaning that they eat a varied diet of small mammals and birds, fruit, insects and other foods.
- Foxes are adaptable to most habitats within their range.
Threat to people
- Foxes are normally wary and unlikely to approach humans. However, foxes in residential areas may be threats to cats and small dogs. Keep your cats indoors and don't allow your dogs to roam.
- Foxes in rural areas may prey on poultry and small pets.
- Though foxes can carry the rabies virus, rabies hasn't been found in a fox in Alberta since the 1950s.
What to do about the foxes on your property
- Red fox may be hunted (but not trapped) by a resident, without a licence and at all times of the year on any privately owned land to which he or she has the right of access. Check with your municipality on any restrictions on the use of firearms.
- Red fox may be trapped during the open season by the holder of a licence authorizing the trapping of fur-bearing animals
- Never feed foxes. They are efficient hunters and can easily feed themselves.
- Removing individual foxes will only create a vacancy for another animal to fill. To prevent uninvited wildlife from visiting your property, you must remove the food or shelter the animals are seeking.
- Removing shelter:
- Foxes may seek cover in spaces under decks and patios or in brush piles, wood piles or construction debris.
- Clear out any debris and use chicken wire to close off the openings under structures that can serve as possible shelter for the fox.
- Removing food:
- Remove all possible food sources from your back yard, such as loose garbage. Make sure the compost pile is tightly covered, feed your pets indoors and store pet food inside.
- Store your garbage and recycling in containers that have tight-fitting lids. Garbage cans that are in poor repair should be replaced.
- Clean up fallen fruit, bird seed, garbage and other things that attract mice and squirrels.
- If you keep rabbits or chickens in your backyard, ensure that their enclosure is in good repair:
- Wire fence openings should be small enough to prevent animals from wiggling through.
- The bottom should be buried approximately one metre underground to prevent animals from digging underneath.
- Talk to your neighbours about removing potential wildlife shelter and food sources from their yards as well.
- Clean up dog feces from your back yard. Dog feces can attract other canid species such as foxes or coyotes.
Download in-depth information from The Handbook: Prevention and Control of Wildlife Damage, published by the University of Nebraska:
Your municipality or municipal district is authorized to help with fox concerns. Local pest control companies may also be able to provide advice or service.
Call a Fish and Wildlife officer:
- if you see a fox that is too sick or injured to move
- if you suspect a fox has taken one of your animals
Connect with a Fish and Wildlife office near you:
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