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Old 01-19-2018, 02:04 AM
 
1 posts, read 351 times
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I have a red fox that visits late ever night or early (around 2am). I put out food for it every night and have taken pictures. I have had to sit quietly for long periods of time just to get pictures. I was told they are not normal for NC that it couldn't be a fox but I am sure it is. I would love to make friends with it. It is beautiful. Any ideas?
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Old 01-19-2018, 12:39 PM
 
875 posts, read 1,267,451 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seelabee View Post
I have a red fox that visits late ever night or early (around 2am). I put out food for it every night and have taken pictures. I have had to sit quietly for long periods of time just to get pictures. I was told they are not normal for NC that it couldn't be a fox but I am sure it is. I would love to make friends with it. It is beautiful. Any ideas?
Hi Seelabee, they are normal for North Carolina, as they are very adaptable and widespread throughout North America. Red fox are not a native North American fox, they were introduced by sport hunters who found the gray fox not enough of a challenge for them, so there is a kernel of truth that they are not 'normal' for NC, but were introduced and became established long ago.


I agree that they are beautiful animals. They also provide us with a great ecological service: they eat rodents. They eat so many rodents that studies directly link a healthy population of red fox with lower numbers of Lyme disease and other tick-borne illness (since white-footed mice are a vector of Lyme).


Regarding making friends with it, red fox actually domesticate very poorly. You might end up 'luring' the fox with food, but you would incidentally be seriously shortening its life span. Foxes need to hunt and forage in their native environment and keep their hunting instincts. If they become human food-habituated, that instinct will suffer and with the change of habit and dependence on human food, they will very likely end up being sick. There was a woman in the neighborhood where I grew up who used to feed the occasional fox, and each one of them got mange and the end of the year was the last time we would see the same fox, they probably didn't make it through the winter. I think a good idea would be to set up a trail cam, or even sit still for a while in the same spot like you said to get a glimpse, but I'd refrain from luring it with food, if you truly care about it. I understand your love of the animal but sometimes it's best that wild stays wild.
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Old 01-19-2018, 12:44 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,498 posts, read 45,489,802 times
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I think OP meant they are not native to North Carolina. We have a family in our Chapel Hill, NC neighborhood and nobody gets too excited about them,. Wish they could take out about half the deer population in our neighborhood.
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Old 01-19-2018, 01:25 PM
 
Location: British Columbia ~🌄 ☀️ ♥ 🍁 ♥ ☀️🌄~
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Seelabee, I understand your desire to make friends with a beautiful wild creature but the habituation you are causing through your interference will condemn the fox to a very early and unnaturally nasty death sentence. You have gotten excellent advice from NJmmadude and I'll add one more advisory that wasn't mentioned.

Not everybody welcomes wild animals to come around their homes and properties. Many people are afraid of getting rabies from wild animals like foxes or of the wildlife killing their own pets or small livestock. What you are doing is habituating the fox to come to humans and their habitations and that will cause the fox to believe that all humans will welcome it or leave out food for it. As soon as the fox gets into the same habit of visiting or hanging around your neighbours' homes too, and perhaps scavenging food or killing their small pets, one of your neighbours will kill it. That is 100% guaranteed to happen, that someone will kill it either with leg hold traps and then drowning it or bashing its head in, or by poison, or by shooting it, or setting their dogs on it to rip it to shreds.

If you truly appreciate the fox, please don't encourage it, don't interfere with it and don't feed it, leave it alone to live its life naturally. Please.


.
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Old 01-19-2018, 01:42 PM
 
Location: Nantahala National Forest, NC
27,091 posts, read 6,892,538 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seelabee View Post
I have a red fox that visits late ever night or early (around 2am). I put out food for it every night and have taken pictures. I have had to sit quietly for long periods of time just to get pictures. I was told they are not normal for NC that it couldn't be a fox but I am sure it is. I would love to make friends with it. It is beautiful. Any ideas?

Show your pics!

I have Red Fox here too...beautiful. Last spring heard the call of a female...very unusual, a bit unnerving if you've not heard them before...
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Old 01-19-2018, 03:55 PM
 
Location: Heart of Dixie
12,446 posts, read 11,563,499 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seelabee View Post
...I would love to make friends with it...
It's a wild animal, not your next door neighbor.
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Old 01-21-2018, 06:03 PM
 
Location: Near Falls Lake
3,105 posts, read 2,090,107 times
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No shortage of red fox in NC. I have a pair that come to my pond most every night. Plenty of frogs, insects, rodents, birds and other critters for them to feast on.
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Old 01-22-2018, 06:08 AM
 
Location: Virginia
4,843 posts, read 2,494,657 times
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OP, if you make "friends" with the red fox, it will also be quite happy to hang around and eat any outdoor cats that your neighbors have. I don't think you want to encourage that behavior, do you?
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