Fear of foxes

June 10, 2010, 11:00 PM GMT+0

The majority of British adults feel that little needs to be done to curb the number of foxes in urban areas, but a significant minority are worried, a survey for the Sun newspaper has found.

The number of foxes in Britain’s urban centres has, until recently, remained a relatively unimportant issue - most city dwellers usually have little more to contend with than a few ripped bin bags or an occasional shriek at night. But after the recent fox attack of two baby girls in east London, the profile of these creatures has risen, despite the usual perception of them as timid animals.

However, despite the babies’ unfortunate accident, 54% of British adults feel that little needs to be done to reduce fox numbers in urban areas, ‘as they are part of the natural wildlife and are very rarely dangerous’. 56% went as far as to say that the recent events in London have done little to change their perception about foxes and the potential dangers they pose.

A significant percentage (35%), however, make the argument that foxes in urban areas are dangerous pests and should be controlled. A sizeable 42% even say that the recent attacks have changed their perceptions about foxes either ‘a little’ or ‘a lot’. Interestingly, women are especially concerned following the incident – 48% say it has made them more concerned, compared to 36% of men.

Survey details and full results