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fox poo on my rose

Hi, we have an urban fox visiting my garden daily and it s**ts on my precious plants. In the past couple of months, it also decapitated 4 fat buds out of 5 on my new Rhododendron, and savagely attacked my (also new) Daphne. I am not going to start on the deterrent as there are plenty in the forum already. I have tried everything and nothing worked. Well, I think the electric fence is the way to go but too much expense and hassle. I live in a town close to London and started having fox problem about 2 or 3 years ago.

Back to my problem - I found the thing on my rose yesterday (never thought the fox will touch roses due to thorns) and spent twenty minutes cleaning up with wet kitchen towel as it was probably done early in the week and all dried up. Some of the new shoots and leaves were wilted or discoloured and I'm wondering whether it could be the toxin from you know what or frost damage (we had a few nights of hard frost last week).

So my question is, will fox s**t damage plants or its growth and I'm right to clean it up? Sorry for silly question but I want to put my mind to rest.



  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 35,156

    It's probably marking territory too sammy - if you can deter it, it may go elsewhere. I'm saying that with my fingers crossed image

    Can you see where it's getting in?  Blocking access would be a start in moving it on. Does someone locally feed and encourage foxes? People have strange ideas about them unfortunately. Can you ask other neighbours if they have the same issue? Strength in numbers and all that. If someone is encouraging them, I believe you can take it up with the local council. 

     I wouldn't think it would eat buds ...that might be coincidence. More likely to be bird/squirrel/other animal  damage I think. Others will have more suggestions too.

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • SammymummySammymummy SurreyPosts: 156

    Hi Verdun, Fairygirl, thank you for your response. The culprit is sometimes spotted in the garden and we know where it gets in and goes out. Foxes can jump quite high and unfortunately we have a low wall on one side as three decorative bricks are missing and that's where it comes in from neighbour's garden. We think it'll still manage to jump in even though we fix the wall (the bricks are discontinued so we've been thinking of what to do with the gap as the rest of the wall have the same bricks - no easy solution). I may put strips of carpet grippers but doubt the fox will be bothered about it.

    The fox didn't eat my plants but destroyed them (broke branches, etc). It kept digging up my spring bulb pots in November (once half buried a headless bird in it and luckily for me, my husband discovered it) and I had to put them under a bench all winter. I'm not going into fox's psychology although it is a hot topic in our house, as you can tell from the catalogue of destructions!

    Anyway, I shall keep cleaning up after this unwelcome visitor and put up with it as I'm fighting a war that is already lost image

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 35,156

    Sammy - how about a temporary structure against that wall? Posts and wire along the length of it to give some height. If you can deter it form that entry point, it might look elsewhere for easy pickings. It's a real pain when you have this sort of issue and it takes a bit of resolve to tackle it.

    Would one of those cat scarer water things work? image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Foxes are omnivores and will eat anything, so could be your bud-eater. Although I wouldn't have thought it'd be their first choice of snack, in Winter there's probably not much else around.

    Fox poo is used to mark territory and is revolting - much stinkier than dog or cat's - and carries the usual risk of toxocariasis, so don't go near it if you're pregnant and be careful with little people. 

    As you said, thorny bushes should deter it - maybe you could plant one in the hole in your wall, longer-term, so that any hedgehogs that live in the area can still get in and out?

    Something keeps digging in my pots for bulbs and I think it's either the fox that lives in next door's garden or Thug the Enormous Squirrel (I have seen it chasing cats across the garden more than once, wildlife is tough around here).

  • SammymummySammymummy SurreyPosts: 156

    Hi Fairygirl, interesting you mentioned the water thing. We bought one in November out of desperation. I did my garden up last year and all my work were being destroyed by the stinky fox. Result - the water repeller definitely works for cats as cats hate water, but sadly not for fox. My husband spotted our visitor looking a bit surprised by the jets of water one night and inquisitively examining the very thing few days later image

  • SammymummySammymummy SurreyPosts: 156

    Hi 1Runnybeak1, yes I know, we will eventually sort out the missing bricks but don't know when.  There are plenty of threads about this problem so I am well aware I'm not alone. I just wanted to have my fears (fox poo damaging the plants) confirmed by experts.

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 35,156


    Sammymummy wrote (see)

    My husband spotted our visitor looking a bit surprised by the jets of water one night and inquisitively examining the very thing few days later image


    the b***er - trouble is, they can't read the instructions.....image image

    There's rather too many of these deluded people RB image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • SammymummySammymummy SurreyPosts: 156

    We may get out our water repeller thing again when the freezing temperature passes, as my neighbour's cats, once deterred by the jets of water are gradually making a come back. But at least cats do not s**t on plants and leaves.

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