Here is the welcome visited upon us by one of our neighbors. After arrival at our home in Austin, TX, on July 10, 2021, we found three adult foxes, one male and two females, and a young fox poisoned with a rodent poison, possibly laced with arsenic. Later we found two tiny newborn fox babies lying by their dead mother.
Through tears, I posted to the neighborhood group bulletin this gentle reminder:
"No matter how you feel about wild animals, please note that putting out rat poison is very dangerous to your pets, dogs and cats. If they eat it or bite on a poisoned mouse, they can die too. Poisoned mice and rats, when eaten by other wildlife - foxes, racoons, coyotes and birds of prey – will kill them too, and so a cascade of deaths will continue. These foxes have lived happily on our property for at least two years."
I continued: "We have reported the deaths of these foxes to the Sheriff’s Department, and likely will order an autopsy to pinpoint the poison, but right now the most important action we can take is to make sure that the deadly poison is not served again to the animals in our neighborhood. Please remember that once in the environment, the poison does not choose who will die next. It can be your pet."
|Here is our fox's wife and a young pup we don't know. She came to our house to give birth to two babies, and died. We found another dead female fox nearby. This picture was taken on July 11, 2021.|
|This the third dead fox, a young female, who died six feet from "our" fox, at likely the same time. Since she was completely exposed, vultures started eating her. This picture was taken on July 10, 2021.|
|These two tiny newborn foxes were covered by their mother's tail. In shock, I did not see them at first, when I picked up their mother's body to bury her next to our cat's grave. This picture was taken on July 12, 2021.|
|Two/four fox children are playing near our house. Are they all dead today? This picture was taken a year ago, on July 8, 2020.|