Plea as urban foxes attack Roves farm pets after being left in woods

Swindon Advertiser: Pippa Burr, pictured with pygmy goat kid Twiglet and mum Fern Pippa Burr, pictured with pygmy goat kid Twiglet and mum Fern

THE owners of a family-run farm are urging people to stop dumping urban foxes in South Marston after savage attacks on their animals.

An increasing number of urban foxes are turning up at Roves Farm, in Sevenhampton, and the owners believe it is because the foxes are being taken to Nightingale Wood.

The popular family attraction lost all eight of its three-month-old guinea fowl to a pair of urban foxes last week.

Pippa Burr, animal manager, said: “Foxes that have lived in urban areas lack natural survival skills, and find it impossible to hunt wildlife. This, coupled with having no fear of humans, means that urban foxes are preying on farm animals day and night.

“Farm animals are in a pen and they are tamer so they are an easy target.

“We have a two-day-old pygmy goat kid, which we fear could be the foxes’ next victim.

“Although extensive measures have been taken to reduce the risk, the three other nannies are due to kid at any time; staff are keeping their fingers crossed that they get to the newborn kids before the foxes.”

On Thursday, a fox was found attacking one of the pet turkeys in the poultry pen, in the middle of the day. The bird was rescued by a member of staff just in time.

During 2012 Pippa lost 10 per cent of her newborn lambs to foxes, and as lambing approaches she is worried that this may significantly increase if people continue to leave the creatures in the wood.

“This has got to stop. The urban foxes that we have seen are all in very poor condition, suffering from mange and malnourishment due to their inability to hunt.

“They don’t have a natural hunting instinct,” she said.

“By dumping foxes in the countryside, individuals are reducing the foxes’ survival rate but also putting many farm animals at risk.”

Pippa said they know they are urban foxes because wild foxes run away when they see humans, whereas urban foxes are not scared of people.

Roves Farm is a 166 hectare working, mixed, open farm.

Roves Farm Visitor Centre is open every day from 10am until 4.30pm.

For more information visit www.rovesfarm.co.uk or phone 01793 763939.

Comments (38)

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9:44am Sun 10 Feb 13

itsamess3 says...

Is this a joke?
Is this a joke? itsamess3

10:04am Sun 10 Feb 13

Oldtownmum says...

I really don't get this?! Is she saying people are rounding up local foxes, popping them in the boot and dumping them up nr Roves farm? There was no reference to who or why. Weird article!
I really don't get this?! Is she saying people are rounding up local foxes, popping them in the boot and dumping them up nr Roves farm? There was no reference to who or why. Weird article! Oldtownmum

10:05am Sun 10 Feb 13

gambon says...

So a young child had it finger bitten of in london yesterday and this family farm is losing it's animals never happened when the countryside was allowed to go fox hunting. Well done Tony Blair is all I am going to say
So a young child had it finger bitten of in london yesterday and this family farm is losing it's animals never happened when the countryside was allowed to go fox hunting. Well done Tony Blair is all I am going to say gambon

10:19am Sun 10 Feb 13

salt and vinegar says...

Bring back fox hunting!
Bring back fox hunting! salt and vinegar

10:27am Sun 10 Feb 13

Davey Gravey says...

What an idiot. He foxes are doing what comes naturally to them. Take measures to protect your animals not come out with utter rubbish like the above.
What an idiot. He foxes are doing what comes naturally to them. Take measures to protect your animals not come out with utter rubbish like the above. Davey Gravey

10:36am Sun 10 Feb 13

faatmaan says...

how the hell did they catch them in the first place, if they can catch them, the council would be able to advise them. Never been able to get close to one, yet alone touch it !
how the hell did they catch them in the first place, if they can catch them, the council would be able to advise them. Never been able to get close to one, yet alone touch it ! faatmaan

10:47am Sun 10 Feb 13

Wideangle852 says...

I have to admit this woman needs mental health care. Who in the world has ever caught a fox?? Except for the RSPCA with net and the animals are either cornered or injured. Please write articles that are not fantasy such the affects of immigration on the town.
I have to admit this woman needs mental health care. Who in the world has ever caught a fox?? Except for the RSPCA with net and the animals are either cornered or injured. Please write articles that are not fantasy such the affects of immigration on the town. Wideangle852

10:55am Sun 10 Feb 13

Phantom Poster says...

I've got news for Pippa - urban foxes run away from humans as well! Does she think they come up to humans and want to be petted? What does she think an urban fox would do to you if you had it cornered?

If you run a farm then you have to have measures to protect the livestock - even if there is only one local fox. People have been doing it for thousands of year.

As for bringing back fox hunting - I don't recall many hunts going through town centres to cull urban foxes.
I've got news for Pippa - urban foxes run away from humans as well! Does she think they come up to humans and want to be petted? What does she think an urban fox would do to you if you had it cornered? If you run a farm then you have to have measures to protect the livestock - even if there is only one local fox. People have been doing it for thousands of year. As for bringing back fox hunting - I don't recall many hunts going through town centres to cull urban foxes. Phantom Poster

11:19am Sun 10 Feb 13

Sashstaff says...

Just more propaganda from the pro hunting brigade! Still sore from the recent prosecutions.

I suggest the woman tries to catch a couple of local urban foxes, you can't get within 20m!!

Strange article, given her privileged upbringing, you'd think she had a few more brain cells!
Just more propaganda from the pro hunting brigade! Still sore from the recent prosecutions. I suggest the woman tries to catch a couple of local urban foxes, you can't get within 20m!! Strange article, given her privileged upbringing, you'd think she had a few more brain cells! Sashstaff

12:11pm Sun 10 Feb 13

RichardR1 says...

So many experts.
So many experts. RichardR1

1:02pm Sun 10 Feb 13

Phantom Poster says...

RichardR1 wrote:
So many experts.
One of your most pointless posts yet! No web sites in Portsmouth you can post on?
[quote][p][bold]RichardR1[/bold] wrote: So many experts.[/p][/quote]One of your most pointless posts yet! No web sites in Portsmouth you can post on? Phantom Poster

1:34pm Sun 10 Feb 13

LocalBob80 says...

Just pro-fox hunting propoganda
Just pro-fox hunting propoganda LocalBob80

2:32pm Sun 10 Feb 13

MrAngry says...

itsamess3 wrote:
Is this a joke?
Boom boom
[quote][p][bold]itsamess3[/bold] wrote: Is this a joke?[/p][/quote]Boom boom MrAngry

3:21pm Sun 10 Feb 13

Davey Gravey says...

RichardR1 wrote:
So many experts.
You don't have to be an expert to see this article is utter rubbish. Why on earth they ran such a stupid piece I don't know. Foxes are opportunists and can wander for miles. That is common knowledge
[quote][p][bold]RichardR1[/bold] wrote: So many experts.[/p][/quote]You don't have to be an expert to see this article is utter rubbish. Why on earth they ran such a stupid piece I don't know. Foxes are opportunists and can wander for miles. That is common knowledge Davey Gravey

3:31pm Sun 10 Feb 13

LordAshOfTheBrake says...

She does seem a bit naive or ignorant with some of her comments.

I guess they will be welcoming the local gun clubs on to their land to dispose of a few then......?

Or perhaps they have another solution in mind.... poison?


The article just looks to be a bit of advertising giving the last two lines!
She does seem a bit naive or ignorant with some of her comments. I guess they will be welcoming the local gun clubs on to their land to dispose of a few then......? Or perhaps they have another solution in mind.... poison? The article just looks to be a bit of advertising giving the last two lines! LordAshOfTheBrake

3:44pm Sun 10 Feb 13

SAM2WIN says...

LordAshOfTheBrake wrote:
She does seem a bit naive or ignorant with some of her comments.

I guess they will be welcoming the local gun clubs on to their land to dispose of a few then......?

Or perhaps they have another solution in mind.... poison?


The article just looks to be a bit of advertising giving the last two lines!
Nice bit of free publicity for Roves Farm.
A lot cheaper than paying for an advert.
[quote][p][bold]LordAshOfTheBrake[/bold] wrote: She does seem a bit naive or ignorant with some of her comments. I guess they will be welcoming the local gun clubs on to their land to dispose of a few then......? Or perhaps they have another solution in mind.... poison? The article just looks to be a bit of advertising giving the last two lines![/p][/quote]Nice bit of free publicity for Roves Farm. A lot cheaper than paying for an advert. SAM2WIN

4:41pm Sun 10 Feb 13

OhThisIsFun says...

Let nature run its course
Let nature run its course OhThisIsFun

4:51pm Sun 10 Feb 13

faatmaan says...

its is not surprising that once every now and then a story is run about a local organisation with little news attached to it to act as publicity for that organisation, the eagle eyed readers amongst us will see regular articles about one ethnic group on a regular basis ( yet other similar groups have to pay for same said advertising), this is probably down to somebody employed by the Adver, who promotes either family or friends, this has been going on for years.
its is not surprising that once every now and then a story is run about a local organisation with little news attached to it to act as publicity for that organisation, the eagle eyed readers amongst us will see regular articles about one ethnic group on a regular basis ( yet other similar groups have to pay for same said advertising), this is probably down to somebody employed by the Adver, who promotes either family or friends, this has been going on for years. faatmaan

4:56pm Sun 10 Feb 13

Phantom Poster says...

Anyway, I'm off to grab fox and dump it in Nightingale Wood - because that's what us townies do of an evening!
Anyway, I'm off to grab fox and dump it in Nightingale Wood - because that's what us townies do of an evening! Phantom Poster

5:00pm Sun 10 Feb 13

Phantom Poster says...

gambon wrote:
So a young child had it finger bitten of in london yesterday and this family farm is losing it's animals never happened when the countryside was allowed to go fox hunting. Well done Tony Blair is all I am going to say
Used to be lots of fox hunting in London before the ban?
[quote][p][bold]gambon[/bold] wrote: So a young child had it finger bitten of in london yesterday and this family farm is losing it's animals never happened when the countryside was allowed to go fox hunting. Well done Tony Blair is all I am going to say[/p][/quote]Used to be lots of fox hunting in London before the ban? Phantom Poster

5:24pm Sun 10 Feb 13

MrAngry says...

SAM2WIN wrote:
LordAshOfTheBrake wrote:
She does seem a bit naive or ignorant with some of her comments.

I guess they will be welcoming the local gun clubs on to their land to dispose of a few then......?

Or perhaps they have another solution in mind.... poison?


The article just looks to be a bit of advertising giving the last two lines!
Nice bit of free publicity for Roves Farm.
A lot cheaper than paying for an advert.
Just in time for half term as well.
[quote][p][bold]SAM2WIN[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]LordAshOfTheBrake[/bold] wrote: She does seem a bit naive or ignorant with some of her comments. I guess they will be welcoming the local gun clubs on to their land to dispose of a few then......? Or perhaps they have another solution in mind.... poison? The article just looks to be a bit of advertising giving the last two lines![/p][/quote]Nice bit of free publicity for Roves Farm. A lot cheaper than paying for an advert.[/p][/quote]Just in time for half term as well. MrAngry

5:41pm Sun 10 Feb 13

Davey Gravey says...

I fail to see how a return to hunting would stop this type of thing happening. They have continued hunting after the ban and actively encouraged foxes into areas so they could hunt them.
I fail to see how a return to hunting would stop this type of thing happening. They have continued hunting after the ban and actively encouraged foxes into areas so they could hunt them. Davey Gravey

7:20pm Sun 10 Feb 13

Impact 7 says...

Yes fox hunting wasn't an efficient way to get rid of these murderous vermin. Shooting is better.
Yes fox hunting wasn't an efficient way to get rid of these murderous vermin. Shooting is better. Impact 7

7:30pm Sun 10 Feb 13

timt1964 says...

Impact 7 wrote:
Yes fox hunting wasn't an efficient way to get rid of these murderous vermin. Shooting is better.
"murderous vermin!!" not murderous vermin but animals sharing the earth with us conceited humans.the adver is only running this to get on the current anti fox media bandwagon.
[quote][p][bold]Impact 7[/bold] wrote: Yes fox hunting wasn't an efficient way to get rid of these murderous vermin. Shooting is better.[/p][/quote]"murderous vermin!!" not murderous vermin but animals sharing the earth with us conceited humans.the adver is only running this to get on the current anti fox media bandwagon. timt1964

7:46pm Sun 10 Feb 13

Davey Gravey says...

Impact 7 wrote:
Yes fox hunting wasn't an efficient way to get rid of these murderous vermin. Shooting is better.
What should we do with the murderous vermin who kill foxes for fun?
[quote][p][bold]Impact 7[/bold] wrote: Yes fox hunting wasn't an efficient way to get rid of these murderous vermin. Shooting is better.[/p][/quote]What should we do with the murderous vermin who kill foxes for fun? Davey Gravey

11:36pm Sun 10 Feb 13

SpeakUp says...

Nice advert, really important to have the contact details at the end of a "news" story. Maybe they should all have them. Could backfire, though. Not sure how many parents want to risk taking their kids to Roves Farm if rehomed urban foxes are ripping the stock to pieces in broad daylight. Memorable days out are great but that could be going too far.
Nice advert, really important to have the contact details at the end of a "news" story. Maybe they should all have them. Could backfire, though. Not sure how many parents want to risk taking their kids to Roves Farm if rehomed urban foxes are ripping the stock to pieces in broad daylight. Memorable days out are great but that could be going too far. SpeakUp

7:10am Mon 11 Feb 13

house on the hill says...

Agree davey gravy, these arrogant huntsmen on their high horses and gin and tonics and a pack of dogs to do their dirty work for them. Maybe they should track them one on one with just their hands to make the kill. So what do we hunt next? So many animals can be vicious and dogs harm way more humans than foxes do, so lets wipe them out! Foxes are part of nature and we need to find a way to live together instead of arrogantly deciding we are going to wipe them out because they don't fit in with our lives. Pathetic cowards the lot of them.
Agree davey gravy, these arrogant huntsmen on their high horses and gin and tonics and a pack of dogs to do their dirty work for them. Maybe they should track them one on one with just their hands to make the kill. So what do we hunt next? So many animals can be vicious and dogs harm way more humans than foxes do, so lets wipe them out! Foxes are part of nature and we need to find a way to live together instead of arrogantly deciding we are going to wipe them out because they don't fit in with our lives. Pathetic cowards the lot of them. house on the hill

8:23am Mon 11 Feb 13

RichardR1 says...

Phantom Poster if you are so keen to learn about Portsmouth why don't you take a trip, as for me, never been there.

One animal welfare expert on the BBC clearly disagrees with the non expert views about the effects of banning fox hunting. He stated the proliferation of urban foxes had a direct correlation, but of course he will be wrong.

As for the article, as has been said, following the attack on the small child ( an extremely rare event by a fox, according to the expert) this could well be extremely bad publicity for Roves, not that it should if we believe that foxes generally run from humans, but people do tend to panic, like with the Horse meat issue.
Phantom Poster if you are so keen to learn about Portsmouth why don't you take a trip, as for me, never been there. One animal welfare expert on the BBC clearly disagrees with the non expert views about the effects of banning fox hunting. He stated the proliferation of urban foxes had a direct correlation, but of course he will be wrong. As for the article, as has been said, following the attack on the small child ( an extremely rare event by a fox, according to the expert) this could well be extremely bad publicity for Roves, not that it should if we believe that foxes generally run from humans, but people do tend to panic, like with the Horse meat issue. RichardR1

9:44am Mon 11 Feb 13

itsamess3 says...

I was at nightingale woods with my sis and her kids a few weeks ago and there was no sign of anyone releasing any mangy foxes.
Puzzling how a hunt with numerous horses and a pack of hounds and dozens of spotters take hours to track a fox yet a claim is made that folk are dumping foxes up there.
Foxes are natural predators and will seek out small animals and fowl to eat.
Roves have made it easy for foxes in their natural environment to weave their way through the fields filled with solar panels.
I was at nightingale woods with my sis and her kids a few weeks ago and there was no sign of anyone releasing any mangy foxes. Puzzling how a hunt with numerous horses and a pack of hounds and dozens of spotters take hours to track a fox yet a claim is made that folk are dumping foxes up there. Foxes are natural predators and will seek out small animals and fowl to eat. Roves have made it easy for foxes in their natural environment to weave their way through the fields filled with solar panels. itsamess3

3:12pm Mon 11 Feb 13

MissO says...

What a load of old tosh!!! You can't catch a fox let alone get it in your car and then everyone all over town drives to Nightingale woods to release them!! what rubbish!!

as for hunting ... the hunt drives the foxes into town if anything!

a fox catching their farm animals is doing what it needs to survive ... its hunting and choosing the most venerable easy prey it can find. This is why they need to protect the animals in their care ... thats there job!!

I might challange myself to try and catch one later on we have loads where we live!!
What a load of old tosh!!! You can't catch a fox let alone get it in your car and then everyone all over town drives to Nightingale woods to release them!! what rubbish!! as for hunting ... the hunt drives the foxes into town if anything! a fox catching their farm animals is doing what it needs to survive ... its hunting and choosing the most venerable easy prey it can find. This is why they need to protect the animals in their care ... thats there job!! I might challange myself to try and catch one later on we have loads where we live!! MissO

4:09pm Mon 11 Feb 13

MrAngry says...

Urban foxes are easy to catch. All you need is a big net and a baby.
Urban foxes are easy to catch. All you need is a big net and a baby. MrAngry

4:46pm Mon 11 Feb 13

LordAshOfTheBrake says...

Apparently food suppliers re considering setting up a food processing factory in the area, so you'll soon be able to get Basil Brush burgers.

:)
Apparently food suppliers re considering setting up a food processing factory in the area, so you'll soon be able to get Basil Brush burgers. :) LordAshOfTheBrake

8:36pm Mon 11 Feb 13

HeatherPc says...

What on earth is wrong with most of the people commenting here, Such ignorance of reality displayed. Especially Wideangle852 and Miss O. Have you never heard of fox traps? It's the commonest way to catch foxes and are easily purchased at country stores. Foxes are caught all the time. And yes, ignorant "do-gooders" do then release them in the wild (I've watched people doing this) Mistakenly believing they are doing the fox a favour (by taking it out of its territory and dumping it in a stronger rural fox's territory. and also not realising that most country people will then simply shoot the vermin.
What on earth is wrong with most of the people commenting here, Such ignorance of reality displayed. Especially Wideangle852 and Miss O. Have you never heard of fox traps? It's the commonest way to catch foxes and are easily purchased at country stores. Foxes are caught all the time. And yes, ignorant "do-gooders" do then release them in the wild (I've watched people doing this) Mistakenly believing they are doing the fox a favour (by taking it out of its territory and dumping it in a stronger rural fox's territory. and also not realising that most country people will then simply shoot the vermin. HeatherPc

8:44pm Mon 11 Feb 13

HeatherPc says...

And another thing. RSPCA and others say fox attacks are a rare occurrence. Nine attcks on kids by urban foxes in the last three years? Is that rare? I wouldn't say so. One of these days a baby or toddler is going to be killed. What does it take to recognise a situation and take preventative steps before it happens. A fox is a very cunning opportunist omnivore with a preference for meat. It is impossible to be vigilant the whole time, and sometime soon a death WILL occur. Then what? "Oh I think it's time to take action".
And another thing. RSPCA and others say fox attacks are a rare occurrence. Nine attcks on kids by urban foxes in the last three years? Is that rare? I wouldn't say so. One of these days a baby or toddler is going to be killed. What does it take to recognise a situation and take preventative steps before it happens. A fox is a very cunning opportunist omnivore with a preference for meat. It is impossible to be vigilant the whole time, and sometime soon a death WILL occur. Then what? "Oh I think it's time to take action". HeatherPc

10:23pm Mon 11 Feb 13

SpeakUp says...

Jan/Feb must be the quiet season at Roves Farm. About this time last year it was dogs killing the stock. Daddy Rupert was going to shoot them. No connection at all to the impending lambing season when visitors pay handsome admission charges to visit this well-promoted business - visit bit.ly/14OtG4y or Google the old Adver story.
Jan/Feb must be the quiet season at Roves Farm. About this time last year it was dogs killing the stock. Daddy Rupert was going to shoot them. No connection at all to the impending lambing season when visitors pay handsome admission charges to visit this well-promoted business - visit bit.ly/14OtG4y or Google the old Adver story. SpeakUp

10:17am Tue 12 Feb 13

Davey Gravey says...

Heather pc an absolute loon. People trapping foxes to deliberately release them near roves farm, killer foxes slaying kids. Nutter!
Heather pc an absolute loon. People trapping foxes to deliberately release them near roves farm, killer foxes slaying kids. Nutter! Davey Gravey

7:01pm Tue 12 Feb 13

Always Grumpy says...

LordAshOfTheBrake wrote:
Apparently food suppliers re considering setting up a food processing factory in the area, so you'll soon be able to get Basil Brush burgers.

:)
Don't try the Findus fish fingers then. They've been found to contain Sea Horses.
[quote][p][bold]LordAshOfTheBrake[/bold] wrote: Apparently food suppliers re considering setting up a food processing factory in the area, so you'll soon be able to get Basil Brush burgers. :)[/p][/quote]Don't try the Findus fish fingers then. They've been found to contain Sea Horses. Always Grumpy

7:29pm Tue 12 Feb 13

Fartim Poster says...

Davey Gravey wrote:
Heather pc an absolute loon. People trapping foxes to deliberately release them near roves farm, killer foxes slaying kids. Nutter!
You forgot to mention all the city dwellers shopping in supermarkets for their fox traps.

I keep having to release the neighbour's cats from mine
[quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: Heather pc an absolute loon. People trapping foxes to deliberately release them near roves farm, killer foxes slaying kids. Nutter![/p][/quote]You forgot to mention all the city dwellers shopping in supermarkets for their fox traps. I keep having to release the neighbour's cats from mine Fartim Poster

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