Getting rid of foxes

Contents

5 Ways To Get Rid Of Foxes From Your Property

June 30, 2017

Foxes are one of the most clever pests, which makes them difficult to get a handle on.

When it comes to animal control issues, foxes can be one of the most persistent and clever pests. This can make them quite difficult to get a handle on. Foxes are voracious omnivores who will eat just about anything. Turkeys, rabbits, kittens, and even small dogs are on the menu for the wily fox. Here are 5 ways to get started on effective ways to get started on fox removal and keep your pets, loved ones, and property safe.

Make Your Property Undesirable To Foxes

There are numerous fox removal and repellent methods, but none of them will be successful as you would like unless some long term changes are made. Remove places where they could hide or build dens, such as high grass, unruly vegetation, wood piles, trash piles, and brush piles. Don’t feed birds or put any meat, dairy, or eggs in your compost pile.

Get An Electronic Fox Deterrent For Animal Control

There are a number of electric ultrasonic fox deterrents on the market. These largely have mixed reviews, so it is very important to do your research and make sure they have worked well for people in similar situations to yours before hand, with similar properties. However, it is important to keep in mind that this will not only be unpleasant for foxes but potentially for your and any nearby pets.

Make Use Of Fox Repellents

In the old days, people would soak a rag in ammonia and toss it in the entrance of fox dens to get them to go away. Today, we do a little better. There are a number of chemical repellents which are useful. If you have a cat, you can also sprinkle used kitty litter around a fox den for fox removal.

Scare Them

Foxes like secure and quiet darkness. If you take this from them they will most likely leave your property. Motion sensitive alarms and lights that go off when they come by will help to do the trick. They also don’t like the sound of human voices, so setting up a radio on talk radio and letting it run near their den will definitely put them on edge.

Have an Animal Inside of Your Home That Shouldn’t Be There? Give Us a Call!

Shumaker’s Animal Control has over 25 years of experience in the animal and pest control field. Whatever your problem, we can help remedy the situation and restore your home or yard back to normal. Give us a call at 443-854-8072 or contact us online today to see how we can help you! For more information on household and neighborhood pests and how to protect your family, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+.

Fox Pest Control: Tips On Getting Rid Of Foxes In The Garden

Many of us are familiar with wildlife pilfering our gardens’ bounty, usually any number of birds and deer are the culprits. In some areas of the country, however, the outlaw’s name is — the fox. Let’s learn more about how to prevent foxes in the garden.

While some people count foxes as rather endearing, cute even (that’d be me) fox pest control may be a serious issue in the garden. Foxes are often an introduced, non-native, species that can disturb the delicate balance of an ecosystem. Over time, escapees introduced for the purposes of fox hunting and fur farming roamed free and comfortably settled in coastal and valley ecosystems. Prey for the fox are rodents, rabbits, reptiles, bird eggs, insects, waterfowl and other ground nesting birds, and they make no differentiation between imperiled species.

There are several types of fox found in North America: the swift fox, kit fox, Arctic fox, gray fox and red fox — with the latter usually being the trouble maker. The red fox is the most widely distributed carnivore in the world, adapting easily to a variety of habitats.

Why Prevent Foxes in the Garden

Keeping foxes away from gardens may be important for safety and fiscal reasons. Although the fox is a solitary animal and usually eats small mammals and birds, piglets, kids, lambs and poultry ranging and foraging amongst your garden are just as enticing, especially when this may seem to be a fairly easy meal for these opportunists. Replacing the hen house occupants over time can be costly.

Rabies, although on the decrease, is also a concern and can potentially affect humans, domestic livestock and wildlife. Not forgetting, of course, the effect a fox in the garden will have on the songbirds you awaken to. So, our question stands, “how to deter foxes from gardens?”

Getting Rid of Foxes in the Garden

Getting rid of foxes in your garden can be accomplished by the simplicity of fencing. A net wire fence with openings of 3 inches or less and buried to a depth of 1 or 2 feet with an apron of net wire extending one foot outward from the bottom is a definite fox deterrent. You may take it a step further and include a roof of net wire as well. Additionally, an electric fence, spaced 6, 12, and 18 inches above ground will also repel foxes or a combination of both the net wire and electric fence.

With repetition, foxes adapt to loud noises, however temporarily. Noise making devices can deter the fox activity as will flashing lights (strobe lights). In conjunction at irregular intervals, they are satisfactorily effective in the short term. The barking of the family dog will also be of some assistance in getting rid of foxes.

Lastly, if you can really make no headway in ridding the garden of foxes, call in an expert who can safely trap and remove the animal.

Additional Fox Pest Control

Foxes in the small home garden are really a nuisance and the above solutions will probably solve the issue. There are other more deadly options that are not necessarily recommended for a home gardener. They are normally utilized by commercial producers of livestock and poultry, whose livelihood is directly affected by fox predation.

These methods include shooting, fumigation with gas cartridges, poisoning via sodium cyanide, trapping, and den hunting. Most states allow the taking of foxes to protect private property but check with your state wildlife agency for regulations.

Fox Repellents & Deterrents: Comparison Review

What predator causing damage to human property is the most cunning? Right, this is the fox. The first thing that springs to mind is a fox stealing chickens resulting in considerable losses for homeowners and especially farmers. The problem is that once a fox has learned how to get to the chickens, it will be hard to keep the animal away from such an abundant source of food. Even blocking access points and trapping, which are the most effective ways to protect your poultry, may not work in this case. A wily fox will find even a very small opening in the chicken enclosure and penetrate inside.

Well, what should you do then? A complex approach will save the situation and that is where fox repellents come in handy. It should be noted that no fox repellent has been registered so far and no fox deterrent has been scientifically proven to be effective in the long term. This is due to the fact that foxes are very adaptable and can quickly realize that they are being fooled. This article covers the issue of damage caused by foxes to livestock, poultry, lawns, and crops. Below, you will find scientists’ recommendations regarding natural fox repellents and fox deterrents. Learn the difference between the effect of taste and odor repellents, when and where noisemakers and motion-activated sprinkles should be used. Apart from that, there is a detailed review of TOP 9 products which will be helpful at keeping foxes out of your property.

Table of Contents:

Who Are You Dealing With?

Foxes are widespread throughout most of the USA, with their populations steadily growing due to a decrease in the volume of fox fur trade. The most common species in the United States is the red fox which can be encountered almost in any part of the country. It is them that are primarily associated with consuming agricultural resources and killing livestock. The red fox resembles a dog, with big pointed ears and a distinguishing white tip at the end of the bushy tail. An average fox is 3 feet in length, with the weight amounting to approximately ten pounds. The color of their fur ranges from reddish to orange while their large legs are black and bellies are light-colored.

Another species, the gray fox, are also known to attack human properties but their geographical distribution is limited to the eastern, north-central, and southwestern regions of the USA, typically inhabiting edges of deciduous forests, swampy or rocky areas. The gray fox has approximately the same weight and length as the red fox. They are salt-and-pepper in color with the yellow neck and legs. The bushy tail is long as well but has a black tip. There are other species inhabiting the United States, such as the swift fox, kit fox, and Arctic fox, but they are of little concerns to homeowners and farmers and are generally not associated with the damage to human property.

What Kind Of Damage Do Foxes Cause?

First of all, foxes are predators. In the wild, they eat rodents and insects, but they once discover the location of your property, you are in trouble. They attack pets like cats or small livestock, chicken, turkeys, ducks, and geese. Even small-sized pigs and lambs may become a target for these cunning beasts. They kill by biting the neck and back of the prey or by attacking its throat. Foxes are also known to be capable of killing a significant number of waterfowls, especially those in wetlands.

Robert H. Schmidt, an assistant professor from the Utah State University, points out that it is not easy to reveal what animal was responsible for the attack: “Damage can be difficult to detect because the prey is usually carried from the kill site to a den site, or uneaten parts are buried… Foxes will also scavenge carcasses, making the actual cause of death difficult to determine,” he said.

Apart from that, foxes can be omnivorous. Actually, everything depends on the habitat and what kind of food is present in their place of living. If there is a field nearby, foxes can consume berries and seeds, but in case they appear in the urban environment, foraging in household waste and pet food turns out to be the only way for them to survive. Red foxes may be observed scavenging in garbage cans which are not properly secured. In the garden, they can consume or damage fruits, trample plants, as well as mark the territory producing a foul smell.

Keep in mind that foxes are prone to take the easiest way to get food — where pet bowl is easily accessible, they will not bother themselves with hunting. Conversely, if there are small animals in abundance and are handy, foxes will quickly switch to them. As we have mentioned before, foxes adapt easily to a new habitat and can endure practically any conditions except for the extreme ones. As Jean Bartels from the Columbia University notes, this may be one of the few non-climate controlled factors to limit the growth of red foxes.

One more type of fox damage is associated with the establishment of dens. Whereas in the wild, they use dens of other animals to breed and give birth to their young, in human settlements, crawl spaces, basements and other similar places can be used as dens. Suburban areas are constantly expanding that influences the wildlife. Animals, primarily highly adaptive foxes are increasingly becoming accustomed to living next to people and it seems they have learned how to benefit from this trend.

“Part of the problem, so another theory goes, is that urban foxes are now so used to human scent that it doesn’t serve as a deterrent. I tried blocking the holes chewed and dug through the mesh fences, but for every hole I fixed another would appear,” Peter Beaumont, the Guardian’s correspondent wrote in his article on the issue.

Upon contact with humans, foxes are not dangerous and will not attack people, on the contrary, they will do their best to avoid such an encounter. The hazard can be posed by ill foxes as they are known to be carriers of various diseases like rabies and mange. Incidents of rabies outbreaks were registered in eastern regions of the USA but have been in decline over the course of the last decades. When sick, foxes become bold and may approach a person. This is a warning sign since such behavior is not normal for them. In this case, call wildlife control center and report the problem.

What Fox Repellents Are Effective?

Your property may become a part of a fox’s territory, before you know it. So, be prepared for this beast to frequent the area eating fruits and poultry. In this case, creating the unwelcoming environment for the fox is the best thing you can do. To protect your garden or backyard, use natural fox repellents and apply them at the entrance point. This is likely to make the fox believe that the area is not safe anymore and will help to discourage it from visiting your property.

Fox repellents work through the sense of taste or odor. The former typically include onion, hot pepper, and garlic. Wildlife control professionals suggest the following recipe for a fox repellent spray which can be made of a combination of these ingredients. Cut up a pepper, onion and a head of garlic. Then, boil them all in 2 quarts of water. Drain the mixture through a sieve and pour it into a spray bottle. The solution will be spicy enough to make the fox feel uncomfortable.

Apply it to vegetation and trash cans but keep in mind that all natural repellents require frequent applications, so spray at least twice a month. Apart from that, an extra application is needed after a rain. Homemade solutions are cheap and can be made of products available in the kitchen of almost any household. However, there are commercially available sprays with the above-mentioned ingredients which effect lasts longer but you will have to spend some money on them.

Odor fox repellents include such ingredients as citronella and ammonia which strong smell makes a fox believe that another animal has occupied the territory. This is primarily the case with ammonia, a compound found in the urine of many predators including coyote. These natural fox deterrents are marketed in the form of spray or powder and are suggested to be used as a barrier around the perimeter of the property. While being considered effective against foxes, these products typically contain chemical compounds which upon contact can pose a hazard to the health of kids and pets. Also, you will have to make repeated applications to maintain the effect that means extra spending.

Fox Deterrents: Useful Tips & Recommended Devices

When an unwanted animal visits your garden, you would better consider various deterrence approaches to keep it at bay. This is where modern technologies come in handy, diversifying your animal control strategy. There are downsides common for all kinds of deterrence, so, let’s have a look at them and consider what can be done to enhance the performance of deterrents.

First, all animals and especially foxes become accustomed to deterrents in quite a short period of time. Just accept it. Secondly, under circumstances when there is a food and water shortage as well as the lack of space suitable for dens, animals are most like to ignore the deterrents no matter how effective they are and how many devices are placed on the site. It is just a matter of survival and basic instincts.

Below, you will find some tips on how to overcome these constraints:

  • Primarily, start using fox deterrents as soon as possible after the animal has been detected in the area. Better yet, prevention is preferable for eliminating of the existing problem. Having come across the deterrent, a fox will figure out that the environment is unfavorable and is more likely to avoid it. Most importantly, it will not get a chance to develop a habit of using your resources.
  • Then, rotate scaring tactics from time to time to prevent foxes from getting used to the “frightening creature” in your yard.
  • And, thirdly, use devices affecting different senses of the fox. For example, appeal to hearing and visual perception simultaneously. This will confuse the animal and make it more cautious.

Scientists from the University of Florida recommend noisemakers as best fox deterrents for protecting the garden or yard. In case you need to force a fox out of the den establish near your house or in its basement, place noisemakers close to the den site. Horns, firecrackers, screamers, whistles, bells, and propane cannons are likely to disturb foxes and in the course of time, will make their life next to you unbearable. To obtain the desired result, use noisemakers in combination with other measures and rotate them.

Another device suggested by scientists is a motion-activated sprinkler. Its effect has the element of surprise combined with an unpleasant feeling of a stream of water being aimed directly at the intruder. Since foxes are nocturnal animals, this solution will be practical to use and will not involve water overspending and, as a result, higher bills. The thing is that in the daytime, a motion-activated sprinkler may be triggered by kids or pets more than once and none of that occasion will be fox-related. Regularly change the location of the device to prolong its effectiveness.

Place spiky mats on the ground to prevent foxes from digging up in the garden and flowerbeds. To create a barrier, place the prickly material around the perimeter of your property. Be sure to secure the rolls into the ground. This measure is unlikely to stop a fox with a strong motivation but will create an unwelcoming environment in case the animal has not become habituated to visiting the site.

Best Fox Repellents & Deterrents: Comparison Table

Method Advantages Disadvantages
Taste repellents (onion, hot pepper, garlic)

Safe and natural; can be easily homemade; creates an unwelcoming environment for foxes.

Effectiveness: 9

A short-term solution; requires repeated applications.
Odor repellents (citronella and ammonia) Ammonia is recommended as a barrier to make a fox believe that the territory has already been marked by another animal; creates an unwelcoming environment for foxes.

Effectiveness: 8

Can pose a risk to the human health and pets; the smell evaporates in a while; a short-term solution; requires repeated applications.
Noisemakers (horns, bells, radios) Suggested by scientists as the best fox deterrent; it is particularly effective when placed near the den; create an unbearable environment for foxes when used over a long period of time.

Effectiveness: 9

Location should be changed regularly; they are likely to disturb residents of the house and neighbors; may be ignored by foxes in the situation of a food shortage.
Visual deterrents (flashing LED lights) Imitates the presence of a predator in the area; sudden flashes work as the element of surprise; will not disturb your neighbors, unlike noisemakers.

Effectiveness: 9

To be effective should be used in a combination with noisemakers; location should be changed regularly; may be ignored by foxes in the situation of a food shortage.
Motion-activated sprinklers The element of surprise has proved to be effective; a stream of water is considered to be a good repellent; it is automatic and does not require human participation; practical to be used against foxes since they are nocturnal; recommended by scientists to keep unwanted animals away from the garden.

Effectiveness: 10

Location should be changed regularly so that the fox does not habituate to it; since its sensor detects any motion, the device may overspend water.
Spiky mats Helpful in preventing foxes from digging up in the garden; creates an unwelcoming environment for foxes.

Effectiveness: 6

Not effective when the fox has become habituated to visiting the site; does not work in resource-poor settings.

TOP 9 Fox Repellents & Deterrents

Below, you will find a review of the most recommended fox repellents and deterrents. These are concentrated urine of the fox and wolf — both of them will communicate to the intruder that the territory has already been occupied. Granules based on black pepper, piperine, and capsaicin which are an irritant to foxes will deter them from consuming your crops and urinating on your property. Devices designed to deter animals by sound and flashing LED lights are suggested by scientists for using in fox control. Being solar-powered and waterproof, they are the best bet for the garden protection. Also, customers have found an ultrasound repeller to be effective against foxes. A motion-activated sprinkler which automatically detects intruders startles the animals with a sudden burst of water. To protect your lawn and garden from fox’s visits, try a scat mat with sharp plastic spikes.

1. Wolf Urine Fox Repellant, 16 oz

Imitating the presence of a wolf, one of the fox main predators, is a sure way of scaring foxes out of the treated area. This fox deterrent spray contains 100 % wolf urine which is not a pesticide but, as the manufacturer puts it, a powerful territorial deception scent. The solution has a number of advantages: being a natural fox repellent, it is suitable for organic gardening and, at the same time, does not contain pathogens. The real wolf urine comes undiluted making it impossible for the fox to ignore the smell triggering a genetic fear. What you need is to spray the stuff along the perimeter of your house or garden to simulate wolf’s marking its territory.

WolfPee wolf urine fox repellant rates 3.2 out of 5 stars. “I lost a lot of chickens this summer to fox. Tried trapping and other things, nothing worked except when we ran out of chicken for them. When we replaced, started using this product. Haven’t seen any more fox or critter evidence, nor experience losses,” a satisfied customer says. However, it seems that not all users with the fox problem were so lucky. Another customer claims that the product failed to deter a group of foxes visiting his yard. Well, perhaps this is the case when a comprehensive approach is needed. Moreover, he should check the area around the house since that group of foxes might have established a den there. As we have mentioned above, in order to force foxes out of the den, noisemakers is a more relevant solution.

x Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission AdChoices Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission Predator Pee 100% Wolf Urine – Territorial Marking Scent – Creates Illusion That Wolf is Nearby – 16 oz

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2. Havahart Critter Ridder 3146 Animal Repellent, 5 Pounds

Although this product is not designed specifically for foxes, its active ingredients — black pepper, piperine, and capsaicin — are known to irritate fox’s nasal passages and tongues when smelled or tasted. The Havahart repellent is available in granules, which is why it has a more long-lasting effect — up to a month. The manufacturer claims that the solution is rain-resistant and approved for organic gardening. This means that granules can be sprinkled among edible plants and there is no need in frequent applications. One canister protects 300 square feet from unwanted visitors. The product can be used not just outdoors but indoors as well, for example, in the attic or basement.

Nevertheless, Havahart Critter Ridder rates just 2.7 out of 5 stars, with almost a 1,000 of customer reviews. Opinions vary on whether the product is effective against foxes. One customer was disappointed and suggested applying mothballs instead: “Tried it for foxes, eating in my neighbor’s yard and coming and pooping in mine. Spread it all over. Foxes were back in a few hours,” he says. At the same time, another customer has told about his positive experience: “This was easy to apply. I just shook it out around the perimeter of my garden. It kept the rabbits out of my garden. So.. for foxes, rabbits, and other small creatures, this seems to be very good,” he notes.

x Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission AdChoices Product from Amazon, Publisher may get a commission Havahart Critter Ridder 3146 Animal Repellent, 5-Pounds Granular Shaker

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3. Predator Guard Solar-Powered Deterrent

This fox deterrent is cost-efficient and environmentally friendly as it is solar-powered. Predator Guard works automatically, detecting and repelling unwanted animals. In addition, the device does not require maintenance. Use Predator Guard to keep foxes away from your property, poultry, and livestock. It is designed to target nocturnal animals like foxes since they will not feed in an unsafe area. The coverage is about half a mile, with a 360-degree protection.

The trick is in its high-quality flashing LED lights are perceived by animals as a set of eyes of a terrible creature gazing at them. No wonder they get scared and become unwilling to wander through the site where the deterrent is installed. But if you do not regularly change the location of the device, foxes are likely to become accustomed to it and will stop perceiving it as a threat. Just think about it for yourself, can you imagine a motionless monster which is worth being scared of? Add to this a cunning and intelligent nature of foxes which would rather fool someone themselves than let others outwit them. So, you have to be inventive and do not rely solely on the device.

Predator Guard fox deterrent rates 3.8 out of 5 stars, with almost 2,000 customer reviews. “I love the product, have numerous units, have not had to change out batteries yet. Seems to work on most predators except dogs. We have fox, skunk, wolves, black bear, raccoon, stray cats, ravens, hawks. Just got to move them around a lot for maximum effect,” one of the users says.

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4. ScareCrow Motion Activated Sprinkler

ScareCrow Motion Activated sprinkler is designed to protect your garden and other areas around the house from animal intruders, what you need is a hose to attach. It covers about 1,200 square meters and effectively operates at the nighttime when foxes are active. The device scares the intruders out by means of sound in combination with a burst of water. All this is harmless for the targeted animal but discourages it from visiting your property as it does not look safe anymore.

The device is cost-efficient, first, because of its long-lasting 9-volt battery which works for half a year. Secondly, this fox deterrent does not waste water as it uses at most 3 cups of water per deterrence. An intuitive indicator ensures that unnecessary flooding will be avoided. To obtain the desired result, you should change the device’s location from time to time, so that foxes will not become habituated to it. Although motion-activated sprinklers are considered to have a short-term effect, they can repel foxes from your property for a long time since the device does not just startles the animal, it teaches the intruder to avoid the area in future.

ScareCrow Motion Activated Sprinkler has over 3,700 reviews and rates 3.4 out of 5 stars. One of the customers who has to deal with foxes has explained the way the device works: “I’ve never timed it, but it is about 3-5 seconds and also makes the sprinkler sound. Then it pauses for 8 seconds which acts like a random occurrence to any animals that might want to return.”

Judging from the customers’ experiences, the deterrent is effective against foxes: “We had a family of foxes take roost near a creek in the neighborhood. Each night very late we could hear a fox making a weird noise near our house, I guess as it strolled by. Well, this took care of it. After about 10 days, we shut it off and we’re guessing the fox changed its route due to this device. Seems well made,” he says.

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5. Foxlights Night Predator Deterrent

This impressive and powerful visual fox deterrent emits computerized LED varying flashes. The trick is that animals do not become accustomed to random flashing, therefore the repeller will be effective in the long run. According to the manufacturer, Foxlights Deterrent is opted for by experienced farmers who have tried a lot of different solutions to keep foxes out of their property. When an animal sees the flashing, it believes that a dangerous predator is present there and leaves the area. The device is also recommended for the use against lions!

The flashing which is produced by 9 LED blue, red, and white bulbs is seen as far as one mile away. It is activated automatically during hours of darkness and is switched off in the daytime. Moreover, the device covers 360 degrees radius ensuring a guaranteed protection of your property. In the garden, the fox deterrent can be installed either on a post or fencing. It can also be placed in the attic or basement of the house. A good choice as a prevention measure or to force foxes out from their dens. It seems that the only downside of the product is its high price.

Foxlights Deterrent rates 4.0 out of 5 stars, although there are few customer reviews yet. “I bought this to keep predators away from my chickens. I have not had any problems but we do have coyotes, foxes, raccoons, and possums in my area. The light flashes blue and white and is a bit startling when you see it in the yard because of the unpredictable flash sequence, but that’s the point. It was not terribly expensive and I’m happy with it. I would recommend,” a customer says.

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Foxlights Night Predator Deterrent. Price: Check the current price

We recommend you consider an environmentally friendly and energy-saving option — Foxlights SOLAR Night Predator Deterrent. Just charge it in the daytime and switch on at dusk. Although this option is more expensive, the device will actually turn out to be more cost-efficient as it will not influence your energy bills. No wonder that it sells better. A number of customers have confirmed that the product really works against foxes. “I love this light, so far it’s keeping the fox and raccoons away and I can peacefully sleep at night!” one of the users says. And yet, this option has a downside — in winter there is not as much bright sunlight that may become problematic.

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6. Wikoo Ultrasonic Animal Repeller

The device repels a number of animals including foxes with ultrasound. Once a warm body is detected, it blasts a range of ultrasonic sound in combination with flashing LED lights. As we have mentioned before, scientists say that visual and sound deterrents used simultaneously are the best approach to fox control. Although the construction is plastic, it is solid enough and, most importantly, waterproof. The latter is especially important since this fox deterrent is intended for the outdoor use. You do not have to worry about removing the device in time before a heavy rain starts. The ultrasound repeller can contact with water without being damaged.

The device is easy to handle, just insert it into the ground or mount it against the wall. You can simply put the top part of the device on the flat surface. Then, select the mode depending on what animals should be targeted. Wikoo fox deterrent is very popular with customers and rates 4.8 out of 5 stars, with 96% of the customers giving it five stars. “Keep foxes away and out of my garden! Always have trouble with foxes and our food bin and this hasn’t been an issue since I set this up. Fabulous buy!” one of the customers says.

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7. Cat Scat Mat

Although foxes have nothing to do with cats, this scat mat is likely to come in handy as a tool to keep these predators out of your garden and lawn. Plastic spikes will evoke a sensation of hostile air but, at the same time, are not harmful to animals. Of course, they will not stop a fox from stealing chickens since hunger is a very strong motivation, but this repellent can prevent them from wandering on your property, trampling plants and consuming fruits. The scat mat will be particularly helpful in combination with other deterrents. The product is made of plastic and is 78 inches in length and 11 inches in width. However, it can be cut according to your needs.

Cat Scat Mat rates high in reviews, scoring 4.4 out of 5 stars. “As good as other more expensive brands, can actually be joined together to form wider barriers,” one of the customers says. Another user notes that this is a good purchase for such an affordable price.

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8. Scoot Fox Repellent, 50g Sachets (Pack of 2)

This is a humane way to deter foxes from digging, urinating and marking the territory within your garden or lawn. It targets the sense of smell of a fox. The thing is that a fox marks the territory to let other foxes know that the area now belongs to it. That is why such scent will prevent a fox from entering the treated area. Note that the required chemical reaction will be triggered only when the repellent comes into contact with the scent of a fox which has entered the treated area.

The solution is easily applied to trees, plants, shrubs, edible crops, and artificial surfaces. What you need is a sprayer to apply the solution evenly, and that’s it! The product covers an area of up to 34 sqm. Creating two-metre wide perimeter barrier is recommended to keep these animals away from protected areas. The residual effect lasts up to 4 weeks but repeated applications are needed after a rain.

Using Scoot will not harm foxes and other animals, nor will it cause any damage to the environment. The manufacturer suggests this product for fox control in urban areas where foxes are increasingly becoming a nuisance. Scoot Fox Repellent has not enough reviews on to judge about customers’ experiences.

Fox Repellent: FIND THE BEST PRICE

Fox Repellents & Deterrents: Comparative Chart

Product Type
Wolf Urine Fox Repellant, 16 oz fox repellent spray, wolf’s urine
Havahart Critter Ridder 3146, 5 Pounds repellent in granules, active ingredients: black pepper, piperine, and capsaicin
Predator Guard Solar-Powered Deterrent device deterring by flashing LED lights
ScareCrow Motion-Activated Sprinkler device deterring by sound in combination with a burst of water
Foxlights Night Predator Deterrent device deterring by computerized LED varying flash
Foxlights SOLAR Night Predator Deterrent device deterring by computerized LED varying flash, solar-powered
Wikoo Ultrasonic Animal Repeller device deterring by ultrasonic sound in combination with flashing LED lights
Cat Scat Mat touch repellent
Scoot Fox Repellent, 50g Sachets odor repellent, fox’s urine

What to do about foxes

Both red and gray foxes live among us in cities and towns, where scavenging for food makes life easy. They generally avoid people, but the lure of easy food, such as pet food or unsecured garbage, can result in backyard visits. Usually, the best thing to do is leave foxes alone, but here’s what to do about the most common fox concerns:

Foxes out and about during the day

Foxes have a natural fear of people. If you see one outside during the day, it’s no cause for alarm. They will usually run away from you as soon as they detect your presence.

If not, the fox has probably learned to associate people with food (likely because someone has been feeding them), and may exhibit a boldness or even approach you. These foxes can easily be scared away by making loud noises such as yelling or blowing whistles, dousing them with water houses or squirt guns or throwing objects such as tennis balls toward them. For more tips about hazing, see our tips for hazing coyotes.

Here are a few facts to put the presence of foxes in your yard in perspective:

  • Foxes are not dangerous to humans, except when they are rabid(which is very rare) or when they are captured and handled. Even then, a fox’s natural tendency is to flee rather than fight.
  • Foxes may prey on small pets or livestock (such as rabbits, guinea pigs or chickens), so pets should be kept indoors or housed in sturdy structures.
  • Foxes will also eat various fruits, but they usually do not bother garden vegetables.
  • Sometimes foxes are blamed for damage they did not cause, such as when they are spotted eating from spilled trash when neighborhood dogs or other animals were responsible for the overturned trashcan.
  • A fox cutting through your yard is probably just passing through on their way between hunting areas and no action is necessary on your part.

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Fox den under a porch, deck or shed

Both red and gray foxes dig dens mostly for raising kits, but also to use as shelter from severe winter weather.

Dens under porches, decks or sheds are not uncommon in urban areas. If you find a fox family in an inconvenient spot, consider allowing them to stay until the young are old enough to begin accompanying their parents on foraging outings. At this point they are nearly ready to say goodbye to the den site and move on for good.

Fox kits are born in the spring, usually in March or April, and you’ll see them emerge from the den four or five weeks after birth.

At nine weeks, they will begin to hunt with their parents. That’s the moment to watch for, as it is then safe to encourage them to leave the den site if there is reason to hasten their departure.

Mild harassment (scare them away)

If you need a fox family to move on sooner rather than later, harassment may encourage an earlier move. Here are a few humane harassment options once the kits have emerged:

  • Loosely pack leaves, soil, or mulch in the den openings to disturb the residents.
  • Place urine soaked kitty litter, a sweat-soaked T-shirt, a pair of smelly sweat socks or old sneakers in or near the den opening.
  • Mount shiny party balloons or 12-18 inch lengths of Irri-tape on sticks or poles a few feet off the ground just outside the den entrance.
  • Spread capsicum-based granular repellent (such as Havahart’s Critter Ridder) around the den entry.

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These tactics are most effective when they are used in concert as part of a comprehensive plan to encourage the foxes to move on. The purpose of these techniques is to make the parents uncomfortable enough to move the litter to a more secure location. Once the den has been abandoned, make sure all the kits are out of the den before any permanent exclusion is put in place.

If the den site is under a porch, deck or shed then it will remain an attractive denning area, and not just to foxes. Foxes are excellent diggers, so the best defense is to bury an L-shaped footer of hardware cloth around the perimeter of the area you are trying to exclude.

Scare devices and repellents

If you want to prevent future denning activity in certain areas where foxes are not welcome, try one or more of these humane, yet effective, approaches:

  • Using noise-making devices, such as transistor radios or motion-sensitive alarms.
  • Installing a motion-activated sprinkler.
  • Using a loud voice or banging on a pot or pan.
  • Applying products sold in garden and hardware stores to repel domestic dogs from gardens and yards, as they will have a similar effect on a passing fox.

Foxes and pets

You may be concerned about your pets being outdoors when foxes are around. With a few exceptions, the precautions you should take are the very same things that are appropriate to do for your pets even if foxes were not around.

Keeping cats safe: A typical adult cat is almost the same size as a fox and has a well-deserved reputation for self-defense, so foxes are generally not interested in taking such cats on. Kittens and very small (less than five pounds) adult cats, however, could be prey for a fox.

The best way to avoid encounters between foxes and cats is to keep your cats indoors—a practice that will keep your cats safe from other hazards as well, such as traffic, disease and fights, to mention only a few.

What about dogs? Most dogs are not at risk from an attack by a fox unless they have threatened its young, but they still should not be left outside unattended for a host of safety reasons, including harassment or dog-napping.

Miniature dogs are especially vulnerable to harm from any number of predators, though, including foxes, so they should be even more closely monitored when outside.

Protecting small animals: Pets such as rabbits and guinea pigs should be kept indoors for their health and safety, especially at night. If kept outside in the day, they should be housed in structures that are secure enough to keep out both bird and mammalian predators.

Poultry should be protected with sturdy hutches or pens built to withstand any break-in efforts by foxes, raccoons or dogs.

Fencing: As foxes and other predators can dig under fences, you should bury an L-shaped footer around the outer perimeter of an enclosure for animals who will be left unattended. Electric fences may be useful when combined with other permanent perimeter fencing. Place a single-strand of electrified fence about four inches off the ground a foot or so in front of a chain link or similar fence. Always check on local ordinances when considering electric fences.

Repellents: No repellents are registered expressly for use on foxes, but the many products sold to repel domestic dogs from yards and gardens will have a similar effect on a passing fox. Examples include “Get Off My Garden,” which is sprayed at or below ground level or directly on plants, and “Scoot,” which is sprayed on lawns or foliage where a fox has been digging or leaving calling cards.

What if a pet is bitten by a fox? Immediately take any pet who is bitten by any wild animal to your veterinarian for an examination and an assessment of any need for vaccination. Contact your local animal control agency or public health department and follow applicable state laws or local ordinances for monitoring your pet at home or in a veterinary clinic.

A rabid fox may act unnaturally tame. A mangy fox may seem unconcerned about the presence of humans.

Rabies and mange in foxes

Foxes aren’t dangerous to humans, except when they are rabid, which is very rare. Although foxes sometimes succumb to rabies, the good news is that the fox strain of the disease has rarely if ever been transmitted to a human in this country. Luckily, post-exposure treatment is 100% effective if promptly administered. Having your domestic animals vaccinated is the most important thing you can do to protect them, yourself and others against rabies.

It’s not all that unusual for a fox to be seen out and about during the day, so that is not cause for concern. Foxes prey on squirrels, birds, chipmunks and other animals that are only active by day, so they may simply be looking for a meal at that time. Before calling to report a fox or ask for assistance, take time to observe the fox’s behavior, and look for these signs:

  • Partial paralysis or the inability to use their limbs well.
  • Circling or staggering as if drunk.
  • Self-mutilation.
  • Acting aggressively for no reason.
  • Acting unnaturally tame.

If you observe these signs, do not approach the fox—remember exposure to rabies is primarily through bites or saliva. Contact your local animal control agency, police department or health department if you see a fox showing the above signs.

What if I am bitten by a stray or wild fox?

Thoroughly wash the wound with soap and water and seek immediate medical attention. Prompt medical care will prevent a rabies infection. Be sure to report the bite to your local animal control agency, police department, or health department.

Mange

Mange is an extremely debilitating affliction caused by microscopic parasites called Sarcoptes scabiei mites, that result in either patchy or entire hair loss.

The disease causes intense irritation of the skin to the point where foxes have been known to chew their own tails off trying to relieve the itching. At advanced stages, infected foxes are often seen wandering around during the daytime, seemingly unafraid.

Mange or rabies: which is it?

A mange-stricken fox may be mistaken for a rabid one because of their sickly appearance and seeming lack of fear. Mange-afflicted animals try to maintain their body temperature seeking any warm places they can find. Death may arise from a wide variety of causes, including starvation and hypothermia.

Foxes need an intact winter coat to survive winter’s weather extremes, yet the mites prefer skin with little hair. So as the condition worsens and more hair is lost, the mites will eventually take over the animal’s whole body.

Mange is a treatable condition. If you see a fox that you suspect is infected contact a local wildlife rehabilitator.

Shortly before departing on my September holiday I entered into a small war with the foxes. They have always been in and out of the garden and I know where the den is, several doors up the road. It is within the roots of an old conifer, a mass of entrances and exits in a garden that is dominated by their dusty tracks and bawdy behaviour. We have gone through 10 generations in the 10 years I have been here and got to know their habits, which from year to year vary according to the number of cubs that survive or decide to stay the summer within this area.

This has been my toughest year in terms of fox activity, made so by a particularly lively group of cubs that took it upon themselves to make my garden their playground. I have been woken by their dancing up and down the broken-slate path at dawn and by their bone-chilling, childlike screams. I have also watched them running helter-skelter around my pots, in, out and over the box hedge and deep into the borders with total disregard for my precious plants. Lobbing an old shoe from my bedroom window is usually enough to temporarily scare them off, but they treat this as a game, too, and return soon after I have slipped back into sleep.

I have tolerated the neat run they had made across the vegetable beds, the sunbathing in the stipas and the musky, foxy scent. I have also put up with the odd spate of wanton vandalism. I went down one morning to find all the hemerocallis buds nipped off alongside the chair on the deck. A cub had obviously been using the chair, and I could imagine exactly how it had lain there nonchalantly snapping at the plump buds and casting them on the decking. The problem was resolved by moving the chair, but things worsened shortly before I went away, with dog foxes leaving telltale ‘gifts’ in very prominent and premeditated places. A fetid turd appeared first directly in front of the cat flap, then at the back door and then at the top of the steps into the garden. These offerings were signs that they were marking their territory, but one day I noticed light beneath the fence.

It had been years since they had burrowed between gardens, as the last few generations had been content to hop up on to the wall in an effortless exit, so I plugged the hole with a large log. Though there is little that one can do in reality to control the urban fox, one thing I have learned is that you need to break their habits before they start to adopt space and discourage digging immediately. Holes under fences can quickly lead to burrows if they start to feel settled. I started to patrol my boundaries to check for holes and several times found the log, or whatever obstacle I had inserted, cast aside like a plaything. Each time the hole got larger, and it went on like this for a month until it was the last thing I was doing just minutes before having to leave for the airport. On this occasion the dirt they had thrown up was strewn over my propagation area, the pots toppled and covered in fox-smelling dirt. It was a moment of high anxiety. What would I return to a fortnight later?

On returning, I gingerly set out into the garden. No more holes had appeared, but they had obviously been partying. There were fish-and-chip wrappers under the box hedge, animal bones on the terrace and three different trainers (not mine), one complete with a dirty sock. I wondered if they were trying to tell me something, but worst of all were the full nappies, several of them strewn about the beds and in different stages of being pulled apart for the contents. There were nests, too, that had been made under the hydrangea and runs through the beds, the Eucomis had been toppled, and several of the newly emerging spikes on the nerine had been snapped off and spat out. I have a soft spot for wildlife and like to see my garden as a haven, but at this point my blood was boiling.

In terms of control, foxes’ stealth, intelligence and nimble light-footedness will outwit you every time, and barricades are as good as useless. You only have to see them leap over an 8ft wall like a gymnast, squeeze their dog-like frame through the tiny openings in trellises or witness what they can do to an irrigation system to know that the city is now their domain. The population of foxes is now so dense in urban centres that trapping them is discouraged since the territory will immediately be filled, and relocated foxes have problems re-establishing new territories. They get used to sonic devices, and in my experience lion dung (yes, I have tried Silent Roar and products with names like Get Off my Garden!) has zero effect.

I cannot give you a satisfactory solution other than to always clear up after them and discourage them from feeling like your garden is home. Never feed or encourage them. Using bone meal and other fertilisers which smell like food encourages them to dig in the belief that they will find a meal. Using plants that are tough enough to survive their games is the advice of the RHS, but I think you have to get into the mind-set of dealing with a naughty child, to outwit and to keep your cool. Plants have a way of coming back, and the fox has a short attention span.

City gardening or country gardening both have their problems, but just because an unwelcome guest might be present doesn’t mean that you have to set yourself a warring agenda. I lived with deer as a child, which have the most impeccable taste and invariably go for the rosebud at its most delectable moment or your most treasured, irreplaceable plant. We couldn’t possibly have fenced our woodland garden (an effective deer fence is 8ft high or electrified in extreme cases), but we kept them at bay with string and well-placed rags dipped in creosote. They are also reputed to hate the smell of human hair, and a friend says that leaving out a sweaty T-shirt once a week in the vegetable patch is just as effective.

I have also lived with rabbits, and in the end the most sensible course of action is to decide upon a pest-free zone in which you have the treasures and then to fence out the problem if you can afford to. A rabbit-proof fence need only be 4ft high, the gauge no more than 1in. There is no need to dig the wire into the ground, as some advice might suggest – the secret is to fold a foot of the wire outwards just under the ground. The rabbits will dig at the base of the fence and quickly stop where they cannot make headway.

Out in the open, rabbit tree guards (taller for deer) are essential in areas where they are present, but both are most interested in young plants, and after three years the guards can be removed. The RHS (www.rhs.org.uk) also provides extensive lists of plants that deer and rabbits favour less, such as hellebore, Cornus sanguinea and aster, and you can garden quite extensively if you give young plants initial protection. In one garden where it is impossible to keep the rabbits out, we have a stack of wire hanging baskets. These are upturned and placed over the crowns of new perennials and those that are prone to attack early in the season, and this is enough to bring them through the vulnerable periods. As usual, prevention is better than cure.

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How to deter foxes

When are foxes most active?

We get most calls about foxes during:

  • December to February, which is their breeding season
  • Autumn, which is when cubs leave their parents and establish their own territories.

Problems associated with foxes

The main problems are fouling, digging and noise.

How to prevent fox problems

Do not feed foxes

If you feed foxes:

  • this makes their territory much smaller, leading to more foxes in the area
  • they are more likely to foul and dig in gardens.

Secure your rubbish

Foxes are lazy and will scavenge if you don’t keep food in a secure container. Put your rubbish in a secure bin and close the lid.

Keep your garden clean and tidy

Foxes like untidy, overgrown gardens because they provide excellent shelter.

If you clear your garden, it will be less attractive to foxes.

Tidy away things like old gardening gloves and shoes, which can smell very interesting to foxes.

Use concrete bases for sheds and garages

Many foxes dig a den for their cubs under sheds and garages. If you build your shed or garage on a concrete base, this won’t happen. Replace all broken air bricks before the start of the breeding season.

Removing fox scents

Foxes repeatedly foul the same areas in gardens is to mark their territory.

If you clean concrete areas with chemicals such as bleach, this only temporarily masks the smell. It does not remove it, and the fox will still foul there.

Instead, use either:

  • a biological washing powder mixed with hot water
  • an enzyme-based product from your vet.

This will break down the residue of the waste, leading to less fouling.

Always use gloves when removing fox waste.

You may have to persistently wash the same spot, sometimes every day for a fortnight, but usually the fox eventually gets the idea and stops fouling in the area.

Commercial deterrents

Try the above measures first. If they don’t work, commercial deterrents include Get Off My Garden and Scoot.
These are aimed at cats and may upset pets.

See the document below for more information on foxes and how to deter them.

How to keep foxes away, without a gun!

Did you know there are many different ways to prevent foxes entering your property, without a gun? Read some of the useful tips below!

It is prime fox attack season with many farmers already reporting significant losses to their flocks. But did you know there are alternative ways to prevent foxes from entering your property, that doesn’t involve a gun?
Read some of them below:
There is actually quite a few fox repellent sprays already on the market, with some reporting that they work very effectively. These sprays deter foxes from marking their territory and will stop them, hopefully, from returning again. It is recommended that you find a non-toxic brand, as the last thing you want is animal rights activists at your door.
1) Human hair: Yes, that’s right, human hair is actually a natural fox deterrent and it is free! One can easily obtain large quantities from local hairdressers and its unlikely they will look for payment! When using the hair, simply place a quantity of it, in something which will allow its scent to exit, such as stockings, and tie it to the fences protecting your poultry and flocks. The human scent of the hair discourages the foxes from approaching, as they are naturally afraid of humans and associate the scent with danger.
This method has been widely used to good success and the hair only needs to be replaced every few months!
2) A radio/noise: Foxes, as you know, as sneaky animals and are successful when hunting in silence. They are known to dislike and be frightened. Therefore, it is a good idea to leave a radio on, near your animal’s enclosure. This not only soothes the animals, through music but also scares away the clever foxes. This will heighten electricity costs, though a safe flock of sheep makes it worthwhile.
3) Mirrors; Yes, this is another one which has proven successful. Foxes are known to become threatened when they are in fear they have strayed onto a rival’s territory. Cleverly placing mirrors around your coop or enclosure, creates the illusion of a rival, thus deterring the fox from entering.
4) Other Natural Repellents:
From completing research, various platforms report that many natural ingredients can be used to keep foxes away. These include garlic, chilli pepper and capsaicin. These ingredients, when boiled and mixed together, act as a natural repellent, when sprayed around the farm.
5) Urine:
It may seem an unusual one, but like the hair, foxes are naturally put off by the smell of urine. Not only human urine but also urine from other predators of the fox, i.e. larger animals. It has been reported that it is the best to use the urine of a male candidate for the best results. What have you got to lose? It is free!
The above humane fox control methods are very successful, though there is no point unless you do all you can to ensure your farm is secure. All fences and enclosures should be checked and mended, if needed, on a daily basis. Just remember, a fox will find its way into an enclosure anyway it can. As the saying goes, “As clever as a fox”. All rubbish should be regularly cleared and disposed of from around the farm. Rubbish will attract foxes to the area, the last thing you want. Keep all bins secured and keep all pet food out of reach of potential visitors.
Other options:
There is a wide range of other options available to farmers, though they can be costly. There are water deterrents available such as the Scarecrow. These work using sensors and spray the fox with water, once they are detected in a close proximity.
Other options are sonic fox deterrents, which let out high pitched sounds, which can only be heard by animals. Like the dog whistle, this does work, though it requires a farmer to be always on watch. Electric fox deterrents, also work but are expensive with mixed reviews. They are also known to widely affect pets and other wild animals.
Each of the above options should be trialled firstly, at the end of the day, what have you got to lose? For those of you who thought you had little option but to grab the gun, let’s hope life has been made a bit easier this spring.

Is your garden frequented by foxes on a regular basis?

As you’re probably aware, foxes like to chew, dig and drop copious amounts of pungent excrement. They can also cause considerable damage to bins, hosepipes, flowers and lawns.

You may not be aware that these animals are also territorial and if one fox is killed or removed, another will soon take its place.

There is a way to prevent foxes from even entering your garden in the first place, all you have to do is read our guide and follow the step-by-step fox deterrent instructions on this page.

Soon, you’ll be free of these four-legged pests and you’ll be able to enjoy your garden once again.

The first step you need to take is to know thy enemy.

Step 1 – Know Thy Enemy

Foxes are smart.

There is no doubt about it, they are crafty, intelligent and their entire genetic makeup is designed for one thing – survival.

They have good hearing, a powerful sense of smell and can run at over 22 miles per hour for short distances.

The urban fox does have several traits that you can use to your advantage though.

Foxes have bad eyesight. They will avoid all dangerous situations wherever possible.

The fox survives by staying away from confrontation and fearful situations. It’s a runner, scavenger and evader, not a brawling fighter.

Foxes love:

  • security
  • darkness
  • shaded secluded areas
  • peace and quiet
  • consistency

They hate:

  • surprises
  • the unexpected
  • loud noises
  • sudden movement
  • flashing light or vibrations

I am sure you can see where we are going with this but please keep reading, we have some great ideas and products for you to try.

If you want to get rid of foxes, you need to make your garden less appealing to them.

There is no other way.

In other words, the fox should feel very insecure whenever it enters your garden, so insecure that it will choose another garden or area instead of your property.

You need to use the fox’s natural nervousness and survival skills to your advantage – make it feel like any other route, any other garden, any other street would be safer than entering your property.

Don’t worry, we’re not asking you to rig your property with traps or explosives but there are some changes you’ll need to make to deter foxes from entering your garden.

Step 2 – Block Fox Entrance and Exit Points

Foxes will be entering/exiting your garden via several routes:

  • through bushes
  • under or over fences/walls
  • though open gates/doors

If you have a camera such as GoPro, a car dashcam or something similar, you can set this up to monitor the garden. This will give you a good idea of where they’re entering your property.

To make it difficult for a fox to enter the garden, try these solutions:

Fox Wall Spikes:

Put humane spikes on top of walls and fences.

These products won’t cause serious harm to foxes or cats but they do cause discomfort and are an effective deterrent.

This product has a five-star rating on Amazon and hundreds of reviews.

Wall spikes – cheap and easy to install

Install a Fence/Wall Roller

The video below shows how this product works for dogs and cats.

It also keeps animals out too.

Here is a photo of a two-bar roller system, I’ve seen these installed in several gardens and they work very well:

Cat containment devices can also be used to keep foxes out

Block Underground Entrance Points

If foxes are digging under walls and fences, you can secure the ground with a foot or so of concrete. Sand and cement aren’t expensive and you can start by only targeting the likely entrance points.

Upgrade The Gate

If you only have a small gate or doorway securing the garden, change it to a taller one and put spikes on top of it.

Step 3 – Light Up The Garden

Foxes prefer the darkness of the evening and nighttime, the last thing they want is a bright light suddenly and unexpectedly switching on.

Motion activated outside lights are cheap and easy to install.

They also have the added bonus of deterring burglars.

This floodlight is currently on sale for less than £14 and is eligible for free delivery.

Step 4 – Install an Automatic Water Fox Repellent Pistol

These devices are awesome and will scare the hell out of any foxes that enter your garden.

Don’t believe me?

Check out this 20-second video:

The system must be connected to a hosepipe, so it relies on your property having good water pressure from the mains.

The motion sensor is battery powered and works during daylight and in the night when it’s dark.

When a fox, cat or other animal passes in front of the sensor, a 5-second burst of water is released.

The system then resets itself before waiting for the next target.

For maximum effect we suggest you reposition the product every few days to start with, just to confuse and startle the foxes.

Check PestBye Prices Here

An alternative product that’s worth considering is the PestXT.

Here’s a photo of it in action, it’s very similar to the PestBye:

The PestXT is currently on sale for £35.00 and that’s for a double pack – so you get two sprayers.

Read Reviews of the PestXT Here

Step 5 – Install an Ultrasonic Fox Repellent

These repellers rarely work on their own.

For best results, target them towards known entry and exit points rather than trying to cover the entire garden.

Most of the products on sale are battery powered and we suggest you reposition them every week or so.

Ultrasonic repellers work by sending out a very high pitch noise that only animals can hear.

Hit the button below to read reviews of this ultrasonic repeller.

Read Reviews of the Ultrasonic Repeller Here

Step 6 – Attack The Fox’s Sense of Smell

So far we have suggested alarming the fox by hitting it with water and high pitch sounds.

The next product will attack the powerful sense of smell that foxes have.

Like the ultrasonic repeller, this product rarely works on its own.

But if strategically placed, perhaps under a bush or shrubland near a known entrance/exit point, it can help to deter foxes.

We also suggest you scoop up any fox excrement from your garden and treat the area with one of these two products.

Foxes have a strong sense of smell and replacing their poo with something that makes them feel uncomfortable can certainly help.

Scoot is a well-known product but don’t expect it to work over a large area.

Another product you could try is the Inspired Fox Deterrent but again, don’t expect this to work over large areas.

It’s best suited to troublesome exit/entrance points and to spot treat excrement locations.

Step 7 – Stop Foxes Digging

Foxes love to dig holes.

Sometimes it’s to build a den, often it’s to bury and store food and sometimes it’s to gain access under fences and bushes close to known entrance/exit points.

This prickle strip is simple, cheap and effective:

Conclusion – How to Stop Foxes Coming Into a Garden

To deter foxes from entering your garden, you should first appreciate that these animals don’t like to take risks, they will avoid areas that pose a threat or scare them.

You can expect it to take some time for the products we have recommended to take effect and you may need to reposition them every few days or so, at least for the first few months.

The blocking of entry and exit points is the key to a successful campaign against foxes.

Ultrasonic repellers and pungent foul smelling products can complement physical barriers, water pistols and spikes but they rarely work on their own.

Do Fox Deterrents Really Work?

Yes but it’s unlikely that one product will work on its own.

In most cases you’ll need to try several products, relocating them to different places within the garden helps.

Blocking entry and exit points is probably the key to deterring foxes, you may need to set up a camera to check where they are entering the garden.

Can I Legally Kill a Fox?

Foxes are protected under several wildlife acts in the UK and cannot be poisoned, gassed, asphyxiated, maimed, stabbed, impaled, drowned or clubbed.

Penalties include up to a £5000 fine and up to 6 months imprisonment.

You don’t need to kill a fox, just deter them with our suggestions.

Are Foxes Dangerous to Humans?

While fox attacks on humans are have been widely reported in the media, they are, according to the RSCA, extremely rare.

Most attacks are due to fear and occur when they are cornered or panic. Foxes will generally stay away from humans, the only exception is when they have been repeatedly fed by a human and have become accustomed to this behaviour.

This guide was written by Danny Woodley and was last updated in August 2019.

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Explore our full list of detailed price guides here.

How to keep foxes away from your home

Whether you’re trying to protect your beloved pet or you don’t want to see hours of hard work in the garden ruined, below we have listed some great ways to keep foxes away from your home.

Eliminate food sources
As with any other animal, the one thing guaranteed to attract foxes is food. Don’t keep rubbish bags outside because it’s very easy for foxes to rip through them and eat the scraps. Instead, keep them in a sturdy bin with the lid securely fastened. Make sure it’s not easy for foxes to knock them over or get into them.

If you know there are foxes in the area, try not to feed pets outside because the smell of any leftovers will lure them into your garden. Also try to avoid using bird feeders because any seeds or debris that drops down is a valuable source of food for any number of pests.

Use fencing to protect pets and livestock
Foxes are extremely cunning and successful predators and contrary to popular belief, they can strike at any time of the day or night. They don’t kill your chickens or family pet out of spite or because of bloodlust, they’re simply wild animals, hunting to feed themselves and their families and are acting out of instinct.

Chicken wire is your best bet when it comes to safeguarding pets against hungry foxes. Use this around your coop or hutch and don’t forget to bury your wire at least 12 inches into the ground and then turned outwards by about eight inches.

Also put rubble or old bricks on top of the turned out wire before covering it back over with soil. Foxes are also very good at digging so this will stop them getting to your animals from underground.

It’s also worth adding spiky strips to the top of your fence if it’s not very high or if foxes can gain access to your garden by doing something like jumping over from your neighbours’ shed.

Use a scent repellent
Foxes have a keen sense of smell which means that scent repellents can he highly effective. They typically work by mimicking certain odours that lead a fox to believe that another animal has taken over its territory. Their instinct to avoid confrontation usually results in them moving on somewhere else. You will need to be a little more hands-on with this method however as they need to be applied fairly regularly in order to work effectively.

Sound deterrents
Another effective and recommended option is to target a fox’s acute sense of hearing.For this you will need an ultrasonic device which unleashes a very high-pitched burst of noise to scare the fox. The sound is not audible to humans but is very effective in startling foxes. Every time a fox crosses the motion sensor, the ultrasonic device is triggered.

While these devices are more expensive than scent deterrents, they can be quite effective at keeping foxes away from your animals and once set up, they require minimal ongoing effort.

Please be aware that there are a number of control methods you cannot take into your own hands including:
• Using gassing or poisoning
• Blocking or destroying fox earths if they’re occupied
• Using self-locking snares, bows, crossbows, explosives or live birds or animals as bait

If you have a problem with foxes and would like to speak to a pest controller in your area, or for more information on ow to keep foxes away from your home please contact Prokill and we will be more than happy to help. Our accredited experts will be happy to provide you with a free, no obligation quote. What’s more, because we have a team of local experts, you can rest assured that there won’t be any long waiting times to get an appointment. Complete an online enquiry form or call us on 0800 328 9354.

Do foxes occasionally visit your property? Check out these useful tips on how to keep them from targeting your homestead.

RELATED: The 7 Most Dangerous Animals In North America

In this article:

  1. Elusive Hunters
  2. Fox Activities in December
  3. Fox Activities in January
  4. Fox Activities in February
  5. Make Your Property Less Attractive
    1. Repellent Options
    2. Where to Apply the Repellent
  6. Consider Electric Fencing
  7. How To Protect and Secure Your Chicken Coop

Tips on Keeping the Foxes Away

Elusive Hunters

Foxes can be a problem. If they have prowled around your property and have found an area for easy prey, then they will return.

They are nocturnal hunters and are very elusive. By the morning hours, they have already made their presence, hunted, and have gone back to their den.

Signs that you may have foxes on your property include pawprints around your chicken coop or vegetable garden, unexplained holes in the ground (their possible den), missing garden vegetables, and/or missing chickens.

Foxes are pretty active in the winter months – more active than you may realize. Just how active are they in December, January, and February?

Let’s go over some fox facts, their behaviors, and activity throughout the winter months.

Fox Activities in December

With the mating season approaching, foxes will now be actively defending their territories. The triple bark often followed by a scream can be heard frequently.

It’s this call that leads many to believe the foxes are killing cats. Often the police will also be called out in the belief that someone is being attacked.

The territory borders are now showing increasing evidence of fox activity, and the musky smell of foxes is evident.

Fox Activities in January

January is usually the month of unrest within the fox family – not only is it the peak of the mating season, but also the peak dispersal season as well. Cubs that were born last year, now adults, will be seen as a threat to the breeding rights and the available food supply of their parents.

Any sub-adults who have failed to disperse will usually be continually chased away. Many of the sub-adults will actually leave of their own accord in search of a territory and a mate of their own.

The resident dog fox and vixen will be actively defending the territory against intruders, both physically and vocally. They do this by barking and urinating and defecating along the borders of their territory.

Fox Activities in February

Quite the opposite of January, February is usually a relatively stable month for the fox family. The dispersal season is over and the fights over who breeds with whom have now stopped.

While many of the litters born over the years disperse when old enough, some of the foxes, usually the females to stay on within their parent’s territory. Although they will have given up their right to breed, some of the benefits outweigh such as a secure territory, a regular supply of food, and also knowledge of the area.

The dominant vixen is usually the only vixen allowed to mate, but females from previous litters will play their part in actually looking after and rearing the young when they are born. They act as ‘aunties’ looking after the cubs while the vixen is away hunting, and will also bring food back for the cubs.

In February, the vixen, during the day, will be denned down in the earth she has prepared.

If the presence of foxes is getting to be a problem, then there are ways to deter them from your property. Just know that there’s no guarantee so you may have to try different methods until you find one that is successful.

Here are a few ideas.

Make Your Property Less Attractive

  • Clear all food scraps and enclose all compost bins.
  • Cover standing water at night to prevent drinking.
  • Stop using fertilizers made from blood, bone, or fish.
  • Gather excess fruit and vegetables instead of leaving it on the plant.
  • Keep shoes and other small objects inside. Foxes like to use these as playthings.
  • Block access to enclosed spaces that foxes could turn into a den. Check first to make sure there are no animals already living there.

Repellent Options

Most commercial repellents are scent-based, which confuses the fox and prevents it from marking your land as its own territory. If you can’t find a fox repellent, look for one targeted at dogs.

You may need to try a few repellents before you find one that works on your foxes.

  • Aluminum ammonium sulphate – A scent-based repellent
  • Methyl nonyl ketone – Also scent-based
  • Capsicum (pepper spray) – Extra-spicy taste; Typically less effective

What is capsicum? An herb that we famously know as chili pepper or red pepper.

Where to Apply the Repellent

Apply repellent strategically. Repellent usually can’t discourage a fox when it’s already next to the hen house or your prize vegetables.

Spray the repellent in the following locations instead, or mix with sand and sawdust and sprinkle it.

  • Apply directly to scat, without removing it. Foxes leave scat in the open to mark territory and may return to the same spot if it is cleared. (If children play in the area, apply fox scat disinfectant as well to protect them from diseases.)
  • Apply to the soil above buried food, compost, or deceased pets that may be buried on your property.
  • Apply to suspected entry points on your land, or along the tops of walls and fences.

RELATED: Beach Animals To Watch Out For When On Vacation

Consider Electric Fencing

This is one of the most effective ways to deter foxes. Foxes usually examine the fence before trying to climb or jump.

If they come into contact with an electric wire, the painful shock will usually discourage them from trying. Run three wires for best results: one at fox head height, one along the top, and one in the middle.

You’ll also need an energizer that produces about 5,000–7,000 volts. The fox must make a connection between the electric wire and the ground to get a shock.

If your fence isn’t grounded, run a ground wire about an inch (2.5 cm) apart from the middle and upper wires.

If there are hedgehogs in your area, the lowest electric wire should be at least 6 inches (15 cm) off the ground to prevent accidental death. Other small mammals are usually fine.

Electric fences are not recommended in areas with young children!

Other Repellents Options

  • Leave out bad-tasting food. A fox that has an unpleasant experience eating something in your yard may not want to visit again. Try leaving out food scraps covered in hot sauce or bittering agents.
  • Add male urine around the perimeter. You may use human urine or male predator urine from a garden store. This generally works best for deterring prey animals, not predators, but some people have reported success. As with any deterrent, results will vary based on individual foxes and how desirable your land appears.
  • Try commercial ‘scare’ products such as devices that squirt water when an animal approaches, ultrasonic devices that make a high-pitched noise, or devices that flashlight at the fox.

How To Protect and Secure Your Chicken Coop

Secure the floor. All types of foxes are excellent diggers and can tear or squeeze through relatively small holes.

Use one of these flooring designs to protect your animals.

  • Wooden floor: Use thick wood and place a layer of hardware cloth underneath it.
  • Dirt floor: Sink a wall of ½” (1.25cm) or smaller wire mesh or hardware cloth 12 in (30cm) deep around the perimeter. Extend the wall horizontally, 8–12 in (20–30cm) outward, so the fox can’t dig underneath it.

Cover chicken wire and holes with hardware cloth. Foxes can chew through chicken wire.

Cover it with galvanized steel hardware cloth, or mesh with holes no larger than ½” (1.25cm). Check regularly for holes in the walls and floor, and cover these as well.

Secure with construction staples. Even a small hole could be torn to make a larger one or could be the entry point for a smaller predator.

Install multiple bolts. Foxes can operate a twist catch and other simple locks.

Use bolts instead, with a latch to secure them. Ideally, install two or more locks to protect your animals if one breaks or if someone makes a mistake while locking it.

Give birds a high roost. If you’re protecting birds, give them a perch at the top of the coop to reach in times of danger.

This may not stop a fox indefinitely, but it could give you time to respond to a commotion.

Watch this video by Videojug on how to keep foxes from chickens:

How do you find these tips so far? You don’t really have to kill a fox animal when it tries to intrude your barn.

Simply take one of these methods, see what works for you then apply it in your home perimeter. Foxes are useful in the wild so it’s nice to keep it that way.

If you have a fox repellent or deterrent tip that you would like to share, please tell us in the comment section below!

UP NEXT:

  • 11 Tips to Avoid Animal Attacks
  • Sneaky Hunting Traps For The Stealthy Hunter
  • 23 Best Survival Knife Brands You Can Trust

Go to our Survival Life Store to shop some of our favorites knives on the market.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on December 14, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

How to Get Rid of Urban or Garden Foxes

Need to hire a pest control professional? We can help! Request Free Quotes

Fox Pest Control

As previously stated, it’s illegal to kill foxes and in most cases trap them. Even if you were to remove a fox from your property another one would simply move into the newly vacated territory, so this doesn’t solve the problem. However, some professional pest or fox control companies will be able to help you put in place fox deterrent plans and fox-proof your garden to solve your problem humanely.

Fox Control Prices

Fox control prices will vary depending on whether you hire professional or fit deterrents yourself; here are some example costs:

Fox Control Service Residential
Inspections from £100
Repeat visit from £70
100g of Scoot fox deterrent spray from £10
5lt water sprayer and 100g Scoot from £35
Supply and fit ‘scarecrow’ from £150
Supply and fit ‘one way door’ from £140
Dig out ‘earth’ from £150
supply and installation of fox-proof decking from £150
supply and installation of fox-proof decking from £50 m2
Supply and fit ‘Prickle Strip’ per metre from £10

How to deter urban foxes from your garden – https://local.which.co.uk/advice/deter-prevent-get-rid-urban-foxes-garden

What to do about foxes in the garden – http://www.wildlifegardener.co.uk/foxesinthegarden.html

Foxes – http://www.bbcwildlife.org.uk/node/3031

Foxes in Garden – What You Need to Know

  • Use plant-based fertilisers rather than those containing blood, fish, or bonemeal.
  • Place a paving stone on top of your pet burial, if you have any. This way foxes can’t dig up the corpse.
  • Leave a radio playing in a shed to deter foxes and their cubs.
  • Use commercial repellents, they are not harmful to foxes, your garden, or any other critter.
  • If all else fails, there is the option of having more sophisticated fox deterrents fitted around your property. Fox deterrent systems of this type must be installed by a professional humane deterrent company.

    Check also:
    How to Attract Birds to Your Garden

    Fox Facts

    We have prepared answers to some of the most common questions about having foxes in the garden. If you would like to welcome these little furry critters into your garden but have some concerns, keep reading.

    Should you feed foxes and what should you feed them?

    There is very little harm in feeding the foxes in your garden as long as you do it sensibly. Don’t give them large amounts of food and clear away any leftovers. Giving large amounts of food to wild animals does not tame them. All it does is reduce the fear they have of humans. This leads them to get close to people with the expectation of food which may be troubling for those not confident around animals. Make sure to dispose of any uneaten food – if you don’t, you may end up attracting less wholesome pests, such as rats.

    As for what to feed foxes, they are mainly carnivorous and tend to eat birds, rodents, small animals, worms, and beetle grubs. However, foxes are also quite partial to fruit and, in adapting to our environment, they have developed the ability to eat almost anything such as cheese, bread, vegetables, and table scraps. Foxes will eat whatever you leave for them, just keep in mind that other animals may get to the food first so try to avoid onions, garlic, chocolate, and the other foods you wouldn’t give a dog.

    If foxes have been frequenting your garden you may have had the pleasure of uncovering a small animal corpse while gardening. Don’t worry – the foxes aren’t ‘sending a message’, foxes store food in caches throughout their territory so that they have an alternative food source should it be needed.

    However, you should also be familiar with the saying “a fed animal is a dead animal”. When it comes to feeding wildlife, they become dependant on this food source. And if they become accommodated with humans, it will likely pose a threat to their survival in the future, especially if meeting people who will be not-so-friendly towards them. Your best course of action, if you want to host these furry tenants in your garden, is try and recreate natural wildlife conditions for them.

    NEVER try to hand-feed a fox, while it is unlikely to bite you it is still a wild animal and is unpredictable.

    Mark Clark, gardening expert

    Cat Safety

    One of the biggest concerns for pet owners is whether or not their beloved animal companion is safe while there is a fox prowling around. Few people are surprised to learn that foxes will run away from a dog 99% of the time, but many are shocked to learn that foxes will also run away from cats most of the time. If they get into a fight, the fox is more likely to be injured.

    Check also:
    9 Tips for Gardening with Dogs

    Stop foxes unearthing corpses

    The death of a family pet can be a traumatic experience for everyone involved, but if you bury your pet in the garden and don’t take adequate precautions a more disturbing image of its corpse being unearthed may be awaiting you.

    Foxes have a very keen sense of smell and regardless of how deep you bury your pet they will do their best to excavate it. It is unpleasant, but not the fault of the fox as it thinks this is just more food.

    If you must bury your pet in the garden, dig a deep grave and place a paving stone on top of the body to keep burrowing foxes at bay.

    Garden destruction

    The damage foxes and their cubs can do to a garden is substantial. From digging to trampling plants, their destructive capabilities know no bounds. To reduce, or stop the damage being done to your lawn and flower beds try using a commercial fox repellent in specific areas. Just know that most of the plant damage is not being done maliciously. The majority of damage comes from the joyful playing of fox cubs and it is quite difficult to stay angry at small balls of fluff.

    Another way in which adult foxes can destroy your garden is by marking their territory. You may be lucky and escape with just a terrible, musky smell but then again you may also encounter fox droppings. This is a reality you will have to learn to live and deal with if you would like your garden to be fox friendly.

    Additional Questions:

    We receive quite a few questions about foxes, and though we encourage you to put them down in the comments below so that all of our community will be able to answer, we are going to feature some of them here.

    What time of day foxes come out

    You may think foxes are nightly animals and rightly so. They do tend to come out mostly at night to find food, rummage through the garden and doing their foxy things.

    However, when it comes to pups, you might witness them quite often during daylight when they come out to play. There’s nothing strange about this behaviour – the fox cubs are known to do this even in the wild nature.

    Do foxes like to eat vegetables from your garden?

    In general, foxes are omnivores, meaning, they can eat virtually anything that is good for food. However, the main reason why they dig up plants and vegetables is not that they want to eat them, but to reach the worms beneath them. It’s also possible that you used some organic matter and bonemeal for natural fertilisers, and foxes do smell that.

    My neighbour’s garden has foxes. What can I do to stop them coming over to mine?

    Unfortunately, there’s very little to do when it comes to foxes in your neighbour’s garden if the aforementioned neighbour is not cooperative. They usually burrow under overgrown bushes or under a garden shed, so those two places are pretty good spots for your neighbour garden’s fox habitat. You can either arrange a garden clearance if the vegetation also spreads out in your garden, or try and kill the grubs and worms in your garden using natural pest repellents. The latter will stop the foxes digging your plants out.

    So there we have it, your guide to foxes in the garden. These beautiful animals are often portrayed negatively in the media with only the most extreme and rare cases being mentioned. In reality, they are mostly docile creatures that just want somewhere safe to eat, sleep, and raise their young. So long as you take the necessary precautions you and the foxes can share the garden space and co-exist.

    If you do not feel comfortable having wild animals roam your garden then we urge you to first attempt the deterrence methods listed here and if that does not work to contact a professional. Do not attempt to shoot foxes as you are more likely to only wound them. This leads to a slow death brought on by an infection. Instead of trying to ‘deal with’ a fox yourself call a professional.

    Need help with foxes in the garden?

    Enter your postcode to view our rates and availability in your area.

    For questions about the services we offer or you can always call us at 020 3404 4881

    ***

    Did we miss anything? Do you have any advice about foxes in gardens? Let us know in the comments below or give us a shout on social media!

    Icon credits: Freepik, Smashicons, Twitter , Gregor Kresnar @ Flaticon

    Header image source: Deposit photos / leungchopan

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    The Number 1 Way to Get Rid of Foxes for Good!

    Foxes can be a major problem for homsteaders. We used to allow our chickens completely free range, but once we started losing one or 2 a day we had to put them in a large run instead. Last year we even had a fox family move into our cow pasture- where the ducks love to hang out!

    Our ducks still free range most of the day- until their numbers started dropping about one a week. The foxes were getting braver. Even standing on our front walk while I yelled from the deck.

    This site contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase using one of these links, I may earn a commission. Please for more information about cookies collected and our privacy policy.

    We had to start physically chasing them off. That would stop them for a day or two, but we still needed to find a way to get rid of foxes for good.

    What You Need to Know About Foxes:

    Foxes are extremely smart. They will watch you and your habits and learn when it is the safest to make an attack on your poultry

    Because they are so intelligent, you are more likely to catch a raccoon or your barn cat in a live trap.

    While foxes do hunt at night most of the time, they will hunt during the day time. This is especially true during winter and when a mother has kits to feed.

    The best way to keep your birds safe while you try to get rid of foxes is to keep them in a secure coop and run.

    Then one day we got a tip from an old timer- someone who’s been a farmer and livestock owner for a long time. And here it is:

    The #1 Way to Get Rid of Foxes for Good:

    Urine.

    And I don’t mean marking your territory around the chicken coop or run. That won’t deter these foxes- though it’s probably a good idea to still do that.

    What you have do do is search out the actual den and urinate directly into it.

    This can be quite fun for any young boys you might have at your place. Send them on a fox hunt and let them mark any areas that look like they might be fox dens.

    The foxes on our property like to move into old groundhog holes, so we mark all those as well.

    Related Reading: Pros and Cons of Free Range Chickens

    Before we started using this tip, we would see foxes all through the day. We would see them on our front walkway and they wouldn’t run even when we came onto the front deck. We had to physically chase them off.

    We haven’t found all the dens in our area- there are a lot! But we have drastically reduced the amount of foxes we see during the daytime when our birds are out roaming.

    Foxes are stubborn, especially in the winter when food is more scarce, so you have to be diligent in searching out any new dens. But foxes are nomadic and if you consistently deter them they will move on to an easier place to hunt.

    Have healthier, happier chickens! The Busy Homesteader’s Backyard Chicken Binder is full of checklists, to-do lists, record sheets, and resources to help you care for your chickens in the best way possible!

    While you are searching for the fox dens near you, check out these articles on predator proofing and keeping your poultry safe:

    Out Foxing the Fox from Back Yard Chickens and Chicken Tractors

    Predator Proofing Your Chicken Coop and Run from One Acre Farm

    Predator Proofing 101: How to Keep your Chickens Safe Day and Night from Fresh Eggs Daily

    Predator Proofing the Chicken Run from Idlewild Alaska

    Read Next: 6 Things Your Chicken Coop MUST Have

    5 Best Fox Deterrents That Are Humane, Yet Effective (Feb 2020 Review)

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    Which? Gardening magazine asked a panel of around 1,400 Which? members whether there are any animals that they would prefer didn’t come into their gardens – and foxes, cats and squirrels came out on top.

    If you’ve spent time and energy carefully tending your flower borders or vegetable patch, seeing the fruits of your labours damaged can be upsetting.

    We wanted to find out which animals cause the biggest problems and whether our members had any handy tips for dealing with them humanely. Cats, foxes, squirrels, rats, magpies, moles, badgers, pigeons, deer and rabbits were all named.

    To find out how to deal with all of these creatures humanely, subscribe to Which? Gardening magazine online or by call 029 2267 0000.

    Cats

    For some, cats are doted-on furry friends, but almost half of the survey respondents had experienced problems with neighbourhood felines in your gardens and would much prefer that they didn’t visit at all.

    Why they’re not welcome
    The main problem caused by cats is digging in beds and borders, and fouling in them. Cats are also disliked for scaring away and attacking wildlife. In particular, for killing garden birds.

    How to deter cats
    All cats are legally protected from harm by the Animal Welfare Act 2006 and their Scottish and Northern Irish equivalents. Dealing with neighbourhood cats comes down to a combination of humane deterrents and tolerance. Members suggest minimising bare soil available for cats to dig in, planting closely in your borders and covering veg beds with mesh netting until your plants are large enough to fill the space. Shooing them away and clapping your hands to scare cats is an on-the-spot method, but obviously only works if you’re always on the lookout. A squirt of water from a water pistol should do the trick, or you could install a motion-triggered water squirter, such as the ScareCrow, which soaks intruders with a jet of water as they approach. Keeping bird tables and feeders inaccessible and out of cats’ reach will help to save birds from being attacked.

    Read more about how to deter cats

    Foxes

    Cunning, sly and wily or charming, handsome and agile: foxes divide opinion. While many love to watch their activities and encourage them into their gardens, some would rather they stayed away.

    Why they’re not welcome
    A third of survey respondents don’t want to see foxes in their gardens, with the main reasons given as scavenging from bins, fouling and deterring other wildlife.

    How to deter foxes
    The main way to dissuade foxes from coming to your garden is to reduce access to food: don’t leave pet food out and remove any fallen fruit, net crops on your veg plot and make sure the lid of your bin fits securely – try using a bungee cord to keep it closed. Avoid using animal-based fertilisers, such as bonemeal, and block up any access holes including under a shed or decking that could provide shelter. Several of survey respondents have tried fox-repellent products and water sprayers triggered by infrared sensor, such as ScareCrow – and both these methods are recommended by fox charity The Fox Project, which also offers advice about deterring foxes. It suggests using Get Off My Garden or Scoot, but a handful of survey respondents reported using their own urine to some effect…

    Read more about how to deter foxes

    Grey squirrels

    Grey squirrels have gradually spread across the UK since they were introduced from North America in the late 19th century. They are now the dominant species across almost all of England and Wales, parts of Scotland and much of Ireland.

    Why they’re not welcome
    A third of survey respondents would prefer not to have grey squirrels in their gardens, mainly because they eat food left out for other wildlife. They’re also inclined to dig up bulbs, and nibble on sweetcorn, apples, pears, strawberries and sunflower seedheads. They can also strip bark off trees.

    How to deter grey squirrels
    While you can’t pick and choose what wildlife comes to eat any food you put out, you can alter what you offer so that it’s less attractive to any visitors you don’t want to see. If you’re feeding the local birds, choose a squirrel-resistant bird feeder, such as our Best Buy Squirrel Buster Classic. The RSPB suggests positioning bird feeders where the grey raiders can’t jump on to them from nearby trees. You could also defend the approach to bird tables with a downward-facing plant pot attached to the underside of the table, or apply grease such as Vaseline on the pole. Another idea is to sprinkle strong chilli powder or pepper sauce on to bird food. Birds aren’t bothered by the chilli, but most squirrels can’t stand the burning sensation and will leave the food alone. If squirrels persistently disturb bulbs, either in pots or in the ground, cover your plantings with wire mesh to prevent digging.

    Read more about how to deter grey squirrels

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