Some mammals have adapted more readily to urban environments than others, one such species is the fox. I’ve seen them quite a few times recently when heading back out of Edinburgh of an evening; running in front of my car as I was driving along. Being a person who has never really lived in an urban area, I never really realised how common they can be in towns and cities.
Earlier in the year I was at Chatelherault Primary School talking to the children about mammals; I asked every class I went into what mammals they have spotted in their local area. Nearly every child said a fox, and most said they liked to raid their bins (another good reason for us to reduce our food waste!). It was lovely to hear the children talking about their experiences and I was delighted to be able to teach them a bit about these creatures.
An urban fox is more likely to live under your garden shed then in a traditional earth but if you do see a likely looking round hole that’s quite smelly and a bit messy surrounding the entrance then you have a fox’s home on your hands. It must be said that they’re not the cleanest of animals when it comes to disposing of leftovers and old bedding. Another sure sign to look out for is the tracks they leave behind. With a diamond shaped print and putting one foot in front of the other in a line; they’re very distinctive especially in the snow. I realise that foxes can become problematic but I think I prefer them to one of their main prey items – the rat!
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Laura Whitfield – Falls of Clyde Ranger