JACKSONVILLE, N.C. --
Installation housing areas have been a desirable place for red fox to raise their young (pups) in the past and it’s that time of year again! Red foxes have one litter per year in late February through April. Pups are weaned at eight to ten weeks and learn to hunt at three months. As they grow older, pups explore farther from the den, and disperse to establish their own home range in September or October.
Be a good fox neighbor by following these tips:
1. Don't try to approach a fox, its young, or den
It is very common for red foxes to make their dens near human activity to protect themselves from larger predators. Young animals are often left alone while the parents gather food and are not necessarily abandoned. While raising young, fox may be seen throughout the day and may appear to be in poor condition. Fox and their young do not generally need assistance from humans. Enjoy the sighting of a fox, and other wildlife, from a respectful distance.
2. Don’t feed foxes or any wild animals
It is best for fox to find natural food sources such as mice, voles, squirrels, rabbits, insects, berries, and carrion. Like other wildlife, they will become habituated and possibly aggressive if people feed them, either purposely or inadvertently, such as with garbage, outdoor pet food, or bird feeders.
3. Secure pets on leashes, within fenced yards or keep indoors
Fox attacks on people and pets are extremely rare. While it is a fox's nature to be curious, they are not aggressive. However, pets or people disturbing dens could prompt aggressive behavior from the fox to protect their young.
4. Educate your neighbors
Your efforts to prevent fox conflicts will be less effective if neighbors are not doing the same. Share your knowledge with others.
If you have questions or concerns about wildlife, they can be directed to the Land and Wildlife Resources Section via email at CLJN_LWRS@usmc.mil.