Why not just move the foxes? NEWSTALK 1010 gets answers
It's been more than two weeks since a family of foxes was first spotted under the boardwalk in The Beach.
Despite warnings to stay away, so many people showed up to see them that the city decided to put up barricades.
But why not just relocate them? It turns out, that's not as simple as it sounds.
Brad Gates from Gates Wildlife Control says foxes are shy and notoriously difficult to trap.
"You're not going to catch the whole family unit," Gates says. "If you only catch say, a mother and a couple of the babies and relocate them, then the other babies are going to die."
He says they need their parents to teach them how to survive and be a fox in an urban centre.
What the city could do, Gates says, is what he calls "hazing." It essentially means scaring the family away.
He says foxes usually have multiple den sites and if they feel threatened, the parents will move the kits (baby foxes) to another site.
It's likely that COVID-19 played a roll in this family deciding to move in.
"If it hadn't been for this COVID situation, there would have been a lot more people walking the boardwalk early on and the parents probably would have felt threatened," Gates says.
"Because the human involvement was gradual...overtime they just become accustomed to people being around."