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An urban fox is destroying my garden. Should I just wee everywhere?

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Mike from Walthamstow says:

‘A fox has destroyed my back garden. It’s ripped up my lawn, dug up my raised beds, eaten my vegetables and shat everywhere, and it’s now having nightly noisy sex. I have a cat, so I don’t want to install a deterrent that might scare him. And actually, I totally love foxes. Google advised that I wee all over the garden.’

Tony Wileman from the London Wildlife Trust replies:

‘This is normal behaviour. Male foxes usually set up territories, burrow for dens and dig for grubs and roots – they’re omnivores, so they’ll eat anything. And foxes are common in urban areas because of the food we provide: our rubbish. Keep bins secure and put out food waste on the morning of collection.

‘Foxes are hard to deter, and using a company to relocate them is pointless – your garden will likely attract a new one. I’m afraid the wee rumour is true, though. The strong scent from human male urine (and only male urine) masks a male fox’s pungent scent, and can often force them out. But you can buy urea-based products that do the same job (and won’t upset your cat). The best can be expensive, so ask at a garden centre, or seek advice from the National Fox Welfare Society.

‘Foxes can be amazing, though, especially if they take up territory and have cubs in your garden. If you can, just enjoy them.’

Get more wildlife advice at www.wildlondon.org.uk.

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