Dulwich residents raise the issue of urban foxes from time to time. We haven’t conducted a fox count in the immediate area so we don’t know how many foxes there are, and whether their numbers have increased. Anecdotally on local messageboards there are often stories about large numbers of foxes being sighted across Dulwich.
Residents asking about foxes should look at the Southwark Council advice at http://www.southwark.gov.uk/news/article/64/living_with_urban_foxes (July 2010) which includes a link to an advisory booklet from the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.
There is also useful advice from the Wildlife Committee of the Dulwich Society http://www.dulwichsociety.com/journal-archive/68-autumn-2010/571-foxes-in-dulwich (Sept 2010)
We strongly advise residents not to feed foxes and ensure that potential sources of food such as litter and rubbish bags are removed from foxes’ reach.
The London Wildlife Trust sums up the position at http://www.wildlondon.org.uk/news/2013/07/03/our-position-foxes-London (Feb 2013)
“Fundamentally, we need to change our behaviour. For example, people shouldn’t be feeding foxes. They are wild animals, not pets, and doing so will only encourage foxes to develop a greater tolerance of people.
In addition, we all need to put food waste in closed, secure bins, beyond foxes’ reach. Taking simple measures like these will ensure foxes rely on natural prey, such as rats, and the reduction in the overall amount of food available should lead to a fall in fox numbers”
You could search for a pest control company to help drive the foxes away, and some companies will offer you a fox-proofing and fox deterrent service – see this web site as an example: http://www.servicemagic.co.uk/resources/how-to-get-rid-of-foxes-and-best-deterrents/ Rentokil also offer an advice service on management of foxes.
Various means of deterrence cited by local residents include chilli powder, lemon peel, human urine (male!), creosote, an assertive dog.
Have you had a problem with foxes? If so please let us have details. We are taking steps to collate all the feedback we receive for a note to the Mayor’s Office and the London Wildlife Trust who are both involved in seeking strategic solutions to the problem. So please let us know.
July 2013 (updated June 2014)