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Vulpes vulpes v Homo sapien sapien

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Vulpes vulpes v Homo sapien sapien


The fox is the world's most successful coloniser after man. Britain's red fox is a star performer with a spring population thought to be growing at more than 400,000 despite big efforts to control their numbers.

Fox numbers are widely controlled because along with other predators in our totally man made environment, they have proved to be a serious threat to other important species, such as ground nesting birds, hares, other wild species encouraged by man or farmed birds, lambs and piglets. Need for control has been influenced by the decline of the rabbit, the fox's natural food and the loss of the professional rabbit catchers who killed foxes.

Out of approximately 500,000 that die each year (see over) some 220,000 are deliberately killed or culled in a whole range of necessary measures, which by their nature involve varying degrees of injury and suffering.

MP's have been asked to vote for the removal of well-trained and well-supervised working dogs. Hunting measures, which inflict the lowest degrees of physical and mental suffering on respected quarry leave none wounded, and are the best regulated of culling activities. A highly refined humane and efficient tradition and a fine example of species management.

Over 500 hunts are the only organizations able to manage the fox population using several methods to ensure a stable and controlled balance of numbers. By working hounds through the countryside on a regular basis they assist dispersal and deal, humanely with the injured, wounded and sick of many species - guardians of the real victims of man's activities.

Modern venery has developed to give a sporting chance closest to nature's natural selection, yet ensuring the best prospect of instantaneous death, without risking or causing unnecessary suffering. Selective measures used ensure the best welfare for the fox, hare and deer populations within a complex partnership with laud custodians and those who shoot animals. This is a free service because riding to, running with or watching hounds work is a paid-up membership sport or recreational activity giving unprecedented access to the countryside and benefits to the rural economy.

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