Red fox, like coyotes, can sometimes erroneously spur fear
when spotted in suburban residential settings, according to wild dog expert
Frank Vincenti, but that fear is not rational as red fox present little, if
any, danger to humans or even small pets.
That said, residents should not embrace the wildlife as an outdoor pet. He, along with the state department of environment conservation, offer up insight on do’s and don’ts and some facts about the species.
Don’t Feed Them:
Conditioning them to human dependence on food hurts their natural and
necessary hunting skills.
A Few Red Fox FactsFact: Red fox are the most widely distributed carnivore in the world, and are known to occur in nearly every county of New York State.
Fact: Red fox has a variable diet, likely coinciding with local prey populations and seasonal availability of small mammals and birds. Small mammals such as mice, squirrels, woodchucks, and rabbits comprise the majority of their mammalian diet, while birds such as grouse, nesting waterfowl, and other ground-nesting birds and their eggs are the most important avian food items in their diet.
Fact: Females give birth to litters that vary in number from
one to 12, with three to six being common. Young are born blind and helpless,
and are weaned by week 12 when they learn to hunt for themselves. Both males
and females play a major role in food acquisition for growing pups.
Fact: As temperatures in a fox den with the onset of summer, red fox will move the pups into a
new den site every few weeks to minimize exposure to parasites such as fleas.
Fact: The activity of females during daylight hours increases with the feeding demands of growing pups; otherwise daytime is spent resting in regular spots, oftentimes above ground.
Check out Patch's fox sightings map here.