Saturday 15 January 2011

”Tammy, Tammy, Tammy’s in love…”

…but not with urban wildlife. Foxes in particular:
"They are getting out of control in towns and should be culled.

Let’s go to the ‘Mail’, surely the best source for ‘ravening foxes endangering human life’ stories:
An ambulance worker told yesterday how a fox crept into her house through the cat flap and attacked her.

Have they turned maneater? What would attract a fox into a house anyway?
Miss Page, who keeps chickens in the garden of her ground-floor flat, had woken early on Sunday to the sound of her back door rattling.

Fearing it was a burglar, she jumped out of bed and went downstairs. Seeing the fox dash under the stairs, she ran to her kitchen to grab a weapon – and the fox followed her.
Ah. Right.
She said: ‘It was a young fox, maybe a year old, but it was mangy and crazy looking. I think it might have chased one of my cats in so thank God it didn’t get hold of them.

‘It looked starving and desperate. I was between it and the exit and there was a stand-off. It was screaming like a baby being hurt, it was one of the worst noises I have ever heard.’
You know, I’m wondering if the fox – frightened, cornered – was the only mammal in the house making an earsplitting din…
‘My cats were terrified on top of the freezer so I went to try to push it back out but it came at me and snapped its jaw shut round my left index finger.

‘I felt the pain immediately, but grabbed the fox round the scruff of the neck and chucked it in the garden.’
You attempted to handle a wild animal you’d trapped in your house, and you are surprised you got bitten?

And how badly were you hurt?
Miss Page, from Worthing, West Sussex, wrapped a tea towel round her finger and drove straight to hospital. ‘Blood was pouring from my finger,’ she said. ‘The tip was hanging off and it was so mangled the doctor could not stitch it.
Luckily, we aren’t left to imagine this ghastly wound, as Tammy has been photographed for the papers proudly displaying her ouchie boo-boo.

I’ve had worse papercuts…

Still, could have been worse, Tammy. As Mark Wadsworth points out, it could have been armed.


Jiks said...

Urban fox behaviour does seem a bit different over the last few years. Perhaps the harsh winters have reduced the availability of their normal prey, making them more desperate/aggressive?

One of my collegues at work had to chase off a fox that was after her cat just the other day and apparently one her neighbours cats was eaten by something recently, presumably the same fox.

I would previously have put down all these reports of fox attacks as general media hysteria but she's one of the least likely people I know to make things up, so maybe there is some truth in it after all.

Anonymous said...

The problem is that the dear little fox is no longer frightened by, or of, people. The fox is a killing machine and a very good one. Another legacy of our past masters.

PT Barnum said...

"I was between it and the exit". Is it beyond human wit to open said exit and provide the fox with a means to leave? Or was she waiting for an apology before she let it out?

patently said...

These foxes sound dangerous. We should organise some kind of a cull.

They run quickly, so obviously we're going to need some kind of transport. 4x4s would be good, but would probably cause too much damage if the fox runs through a hedge or something. I know - horses.

We'll be out in all weathers and will need t keep warm. It would also be useful if we could spot who else is helping. Some kind of snazzy long bright red coat would seem to be in order?

The bit I'm having real problems with is that we're going to need some way of sniffing out and following the fox, too. Can anyone think of a domesticated animal that is really good at following scent trails?


(OK, these are urban foxes, but I couldn't resist!)

Anonymous said...

Suburbanite in foxes-aren't-cuddly balls-of-fur shocker.


Lady Virginia Droit de Seigneur said...

Shame the fox wasn't rabid

Anonymous said...

This woman has infuriated me so much. She puts chickens in front of them and then acts surprised when they visit her house! She tries to pick up the fox and then acts surprised when it bites her? What a stupid, fame seeking nightmare she seems to be.
Fox ecology is different in the towns and cities but foxes are not dangerous, there is absolutely no proof of this. It is spin; pure and simple especially when you realise that the editor of the daily mail (one of the most fox hating newspapers) is pro hunting and a member of the Countryside Alliance then you will see why there has been so many fox attacks.
I wish these people weren't so scientifically illiterate.

JuliaM said...

"Urban fox behaviour does seem a bit different over the last few years. "

They are certainly less afraid of people. While delivering a newspaper to a friend in the deep snow just before Christmas (she was a bit unsteady on her feet and didn't want to go out), about 6:00 in the morning so still dark, I spotted a young animal trotting around. So I stopped and whistled.

Damned if it didn't trot up to me, stop three feet away, and stare, trying to make me out!

"Or was she waiting for an apology before she let it out?"


"OK, these are urban foxes, but I couldn't resist!"

I think the sight of the Plaistow & West Ham Hunt in full cry would be an amazing sight! :)

"What a stupid, fame seeking nightmare she seems to be."

And worryingly dim, for a paramedic!

Zaphod said...

She may well be the sort who expects people in foreign countries to learn to co-exist with their charismatic megafauna. Lions, tigers, bears etc. But if a fox dares to eyeball a human, we need a cull! Or possibly some sort of outreach program.

JuliaM said...

Indeed, she probably is.