Fox

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rick
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Fox

Post by rick » Wed Apr 12, 2017 7:04 am

At 4:15 this morning. I woke up to a commotion and the fox bolted as I came out the back door.
Blaze must have been shaken or had a heart attack - she died.
I thought Betty was in a similar state but doesn't seem to have any injuries. She's gone to sit on the nest and I'm thinking she may have a broken egg. She was on the floor next to Blaze and and not moving before I brought them all inside.
I think Linden provided a distraction for Betty. He has been plucked on his back and there is a little blood but no punctures as far as I can see.
Aerial was on the high perch and seems to have stayed out of it.

Not sure whether we will need the vet - will see how things go this morning.

No mystery how the fox got in. There's an open topped area (just a small strip between the side of the run and the fence) and for a couple of years it has been open at the side (except when they were confined under cover.) I really didn’t think a fox would cross the several small terrace gardens, fences and walls to get to the back of our house. One thing that has changed is that I put the dogs bed in the front room yesterday and left it there last night. He occasionally barks at night at what is usually a cat out there - maybe that also made a difference.

Obviously I will be buying a lot of weld mesh today as when the fox returns purposely the half inch chicken wire wont keep it out.

I cant believe how fast I’ve been losing them lately - this was completely off my radar.
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Marigold
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Re: Fox

Post by Marigold » Wed Apr 12, 2017 7:51 am

Oh dear, Rick, how awful. I'm so sorry. Poor Blaze. I hope Betty was just in shock and will recover in time. Good for little Linden, he's really grown up now. At least you know how it happened and can reinforce the open bit so there won't be any more trouble. Can you see where the fox actually got in to your garden?
I've never had any evidence of foxes in our garden, but we get a whiff of them sometimes when walking near local hedgerows, so I know they're around. Nothing like a good strong run to beat a hungry fox, especially in the breeding season.
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rick
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Re: Fox

Post by rick » Wed Apr 12, 2017 8:25 am

Thanks Marigold. It would have come over the back wall which is only 4 foot high but before that two 6 foot fences. Going to clad the whole run in heavy gauge mesh.
Betty seems OK. Linden is obviously feeling worse for wear, probably just sore I hope. Yes, he has earned his stripes now!
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dinosaw
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Re: Fox

Post by dinosaw » Wed Apr 12, 2017 9:03 am

Very sorry to hear about poor blaze Rick. On the bright side, most of the flock have survived which is more than you can normally hope for when a fox gets into your run and you at least know how to prevent any further attacks.
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chrismahon
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Re: Fox

Post by chrismahon » Wed Apr 12, 2017 9:48 am

That's bad luck Rick. We had a similar situation when a fox squeezed through a broken canal-side fence panel that was invisible to us as there was a vine grown over it. Once that was fixed it then tried to get through from the neighbour's garden, so they obligingly removed the stuff across the gaps in the hedge to let it in and then replaced the stuff after the damage was done- they didn't like us having chickens.

You are quite right- the fox will now be back every day to try and break in. Give Linden a hug from me- sounds like the brave little chap has earned some respect.
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rick
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Re: Fox

Post by rick » Wed Apr 12, 2017 11:52 am

Thanks all!
Glad I went to the vet (mostly to take Blaze for cremation) but also took Betty and Linden. Linden has puncture wounds that were under the matted under feathers and I hadn’t seen. They don’t appear to be too deep but there's bruising. He has had a painkiller and has some Baytrill for an antibiotic.
Now to get some reinforcements for the run.
All the 'sisters' are gone now. Sigh Still, it could defiantly have been worse.

The best I could get at short notice was 'puppy wire' which is a 4 inch 1.6mm weldmesh with holes that get progressively smaller towards the bottom. I dont think a fox could squeeze through (it would have to be at the top) or want to try as if it gets in it wont be getting out in a hurry and I'll be catching it.
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