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Taking a kit from the wild to hand rear it?

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the_unstable
Noble Member

Woah, it was late last night. I said "little-to-know" but meant "little-to-no" haha.

As to the "wild animals" part, I was assuming there was a distinct difference between the tame fox kit and the wild fox kit. I raised wild cotton tail rabbits last summer (eyes unopened) and they turned out wild as anything. So they were released into the wild shortly before fall. Obviously, raccoons and foxes are different from rabbits but that is mainly where I get my opinion from, I guess. They were always wild despite my best efforts to have they calm down and enjoy their new comfy life. They never ended up liking the hutch (even though it was HUGE and outdoors) and they certainly never liked me.

Hm, I've never raised a wild rabbit so maybe they are just...different. Some rabbits in captivity that have not been handled much are very wild as well. They might have been different if handled more? I'm not sure.

As for a difference between tame and wild, tame can apply to any animal that was conditioned/taught to accept human interaction, wild born or not. Wild can I suppose refer to the behavior and temperament or the origin of the animal.

And no worries, you personally didn't offend me, that's for sure Smile

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Posted : September 24, 2012 11:33 am
Elina
Noble Member Pats Friends

As far as we know genetically, unless you are talking about the Russian domesticated silver foxes there is no difference between the red foxes in the grounds of my house and the red foxes within my house so I personally do not see a problem with taking one from the wild if the choice is that it comes home with you or it is left to die.

Where I DO see a problem is when someone then gets bored of the fox and releases it into the wild.

I do not see a problem with taking adult animals from the wild to diversify the captive breeding stock so that the gene pool does not stagnate. If people do not do this and start interbreeding the captive stock, that is where I do have a problem. I know allot of animals are inbred to make them what they are but I still think that if the option is there that it is better to bring unrelated wild animals in. Otherwise when people say that private keepers have more success then zoos and in some cased the animals in the wild I would feel that if we were suddenly breeding sickly animals through all the inbreeding that we would not be doing any species any favours.

I think that so long as you know enough about a species that taking (legally) pairs of animals that are not yet in the pet trade from the wild is okay but I really need to stress that I don't think everyone should do this and it should only be done legally. Take TG and Pua for example, Pua is thriving in captivity due to TG's research and dedication.

So I guess what I am trying to say is that I think it depends on the situation and persons involved.


http://theflashmans.blogspot.com/ - Online home of Elspeth and Harry Flashman the Corsac foxes.
http://flashmanfoxes.webs.com - Photos and videos of my foxlings!

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Posted : September 24, 2012 12:59 pm
natashaami777
Trusted Member

As far as we know genetically, unless you are talking about the Russian domesticated silver foxes there is no difference between the red foxes in the grounds of my house and the red foxes within my house so I personally do not see a problem with taking one from the wild if the choice is that it comes home with you or it is left to die.

Where I DO see a problem is when someone then gets bored of the fox and releases it into the wild.

I do not see a problem with taking adult animals from the wild to diversify the captive breeding stock so that the gene pool does not stagnate. If people do not do this and start interbreeding the captive stock, that is where I do have a problem. I know allot of animals are inbred to make them what they are but I still think that if the option is there that it is better to bring unrelated wild animals in. Otherwise when people say that private keepers have more success then zoos and in some cased the animals in the wild I would feel that if we were suddenly breeding sickly animals through all the inbreeding that we would not be doing any species any favours.

I think that so long as you know enough about a species that taking (legally) pairs of animals that are not yet in the pet trade from the wild is okay but I really need to stress that I don't think everyone should do this and it should only be done legally. Take TG and Pua for example, Pua is thriving in captivity due to TG's research and dedication.

So I guess what I am trying to say is that I think it depends on the situation and persons involved.

Very good point. Snake keepers import wild stock to open gene pools so what's different about foxes?

The person I know took it when it's eyes were closed and no mother in sight so of course like we all would, would think the mother is dead or abandoned the kit.

He then offered to find and take a kit from the wild for me to raise it straight from the bottle but refused the offer.

I think the question I really wanted answering was : Would you pay someone to take a kit from the wild for you to raise it?

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Topic starter Posted : September 24, 2012 4:32 pm
sarajeku
Noble Member

Considering the laws in my state, yes. Absolutely. That is the only way to get one legally, since you can't import one into the state as a pet and the only way to get one is wild caught during a certain season. The same goes for coyotes. But you can buy a live one from a licensed trapper, so if he got a baby one, I would take it. I've raised one wild caught with the refuge (I doubt it was very traumatic since he barely had his eyes open) and he turned out fine and happy.

The only other way around that (to get one imported from another state) is to be a USDA licensed as an educational facility and get a transport permit. They gave the wildlife refuge I work at the run around trying to get one for a coyote to get out of state vet treatment for 48 hours.

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Posted : September 24, 2012 5:15 pm
the_unstable
Noble Member

Would you pay someone to take a kit from the wild for you to raise it?

For reasons mentioned by others already, there is no need to do this. There are so many captive bred foxes available that there is no reason to take one from the wild unless legality in your area doesn't allow you to acquire the fox in any other way. As for paying for someone to do it, no way. Wouldn't part of the benefit of getting a fox from the wild be that you don't have to pay a purchase price? Another benefit is that you and only you are the one to raise that fox. That's a special bond, I wouldn't choose to share that if I didn't have to.

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Posted : September 24, 2012 9:39 pm
Gilbert
Active Member

Hi new here and also from the UK.

Foxes are considered a pest in the UK and although DEFRA will often be seen arguing that there is no evidence they are a nuisance they still maintain a PDF document on their control; http://archive.defra.gov.uk/wildlife-pe ... es-cop.pdf

Further reading will tell you that despite culling or any other prevention measures the population of foxes in the UK has remained fairly stable (around 250,000) for over ten years. Some good reading can be found here http://www.thefoxwebsite.org/ and by downloading "After the hunt".

Taking a fox cub from the wild would have no impact on the wild population. Should you choose to take one you only have three considerations;

The impact upon the Fox cub; would it be better off with you than in the wild, are you capable of looking after its welfare better than it could alone? That should be a no brainer, but if you take anything from the wild you deprive it of the ability to fend for itself and have to provide everything it would normally find across its territory. In urban foxes this could be as small as one quarter of a square mile. In rural areas this could be between two and ten square miles.

The impact upon you; can you commit to this animal for the next six years, maybe fourteen years?

The impact on those around you. Primarily their Health and Safety.

There are rescue centres that have Foxes that cannot be returned to the Wild, though they normally accept donations/ adoptions that keep them in a rescue centre, rather than placing them as pets. That is not to say that someone with experience and the right accommodation could not home one.

As others have said there are plenty for sale in the UK although the law states that these can only be sold once weaned. I would be weary of anyone passing on an abandoned cub to be raised by someone without experience. ( I would have no hesitation in passing on a cub under six weeks to someone I knew had raised them).

There are five foxes visit me regularly. They appear to be a Dog, a Vixen, two helpers from her 2011 litter and a lone dog. They torment my dogs when they are in the garden. They follow us to the Park nearby where they will play with my three dogs (ok torment them even further) and they have come in the patio doors to steal food from the dog bowls. Personally I would be heartbroken to find one of them in a cage.

Gilbert

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Posted : September 25, 2012 10:37 am
natashaami777
Trusted Member

Someone offered me a wild fox kit for £150-£200.

Giving that he could find one without it's mother around and so it's eyes closed so it's not torment for the fox kit as it grows. If it's eyes are shut then it won't know the difference between being wild and captive. It would be very hard to find a really young kit and take it without the mother being there.

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Topic starter Posted : September 25, 2012 11:33 am
Gilbert
Active Member

Someone offered me a wild fox kit for £150-£200.

Giving that he could find one without it's mother around and so it's eyes closed so it's not torment for the fox kit as it grows. If it's eyes are shut then it won't know the difference between being wild and captive. It would be very hard to find a really young kit and take it without the mother being there.

Are you expressing doubt, that he could?

It is highly unlikely he would find a kit with its eyes closed who was not with his mother or where the mother was not very close. Does he have more than one?

Gilbert

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Posted : September 25, 2012 3:46 pm
Lasergrl
Noble Member

Cottontail rabbits are one of the rare instances where a wild species cannot tame down or imprint 99% of the time. Your experience was very common and its rare to even get them to live.
For the most part, it is harder to imprint a small herbivore then a carnovire simply because the fight or flight response is so ingrained.
I have no moral problem with someone taking a baby from the wild provided they give it adequate care. Its no different to me then the predation of that kit, or its death from disease. The kit would be removed from the wild in some manner in 50% or more of natural situations. Besides, humans ARE part of nature so it can be argued us making pets is somewhat natural.

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Posted : September 25, 2012 4:43 pm
Splashstorm
Prominent Member

Ooh, I've raised 9 Cottontail rabbits, and have owned 7 of my own. :3 They are definitely skittish but just like any other animal can form very strong bonds with owners.

I really have no problem with taking a baby animal from the wild as long as you don't kill it's parents or do anything illegal.

Past Pets: Sea-monkeys, 7 Cottontail rabbits, a Wakin goldfish, 2 cats & a betta fish.
Wishlist: Malinois, Alaskan wolf, hyena, liger (& other big cats), Arabian horse, dolphin, & much more!

~RIP my Cottontail rabbit Brownie AUG 15 2011~

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Posted : September 26, 2012 1:54 am
RabbleFox
Honorable Member

How did you form such strong bonds with your rabbits!? I loved and cared for them all day everyday (and when they were super young, all night!). They never bonded to me. In the end it worked out that they would be happier in the wild were they wouldn't be scared out of their minds 100% of the time. (Maybe just 95%).

Attributing their behavior it to their being a small, herbivore makes sense. I was still sad that they didn't love me 🙁

~RabbleFox

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Posted : September 26, 2012 7:48 am
natashaami777
Trusted Member

Someone offered me a wild fox kit for £150-£200.

Giving that he could find one without it's mother around and so it's eyes closed so it's not torment for the fox kit as it grows. If it's eyes are shut then it won't know the difference between being wild and captive. It would be very hard to find a really young kit and take it without the mother being there.

Are you expressing doubt, that he could?

It is highly unlikely he would find a kit with its eyes closed who was not with his mother or where the mother was not very close. Does he have more than one?

Yeah I have doubts that he could. He found just the one when it was super tiny and kept it. He only has one.

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Topic starter Posted : September 26, 2012 9:36 am
Gilbert
Active Member

Someone offered me a wild fox kit for £150-£200.

Giving that he could find one without it's mother around and so it's eyes closed so it's not torment for the fox kit as it grows. If it's eyes are shut then it won't know the difference between being wild and captive. It would be very hard to find a really young kit and take it without the mother being there.

Are you expressing doubt, that he could?

It is highly unlikely he would find a kit with its eyes closed who was not with his mother or where the mother was not very close. Does he have more than one?

Yeah I have doubts that he could. He found just the one when it was super tiny and kept it. He only has one.

In the uk cubs/kits are normally born around March and their eyes are fully open by 15 days, sometimes earlier, by September they are fully grown and fending for themselves. I suppose it is possible given the crazy weather that a Vixen may have squeezed in a second or late litter, especially if she was in a captive group, but I would be sceptical of someone selling them as wild.

Personal opinion as someone may know of this happening.

Gilbert

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Posted : September 26, 2012 6:18 pm
sarajeku
Noble Member

That's the norm everywhere. Depending on the species, fox kits aren't available this late in the year (fennecs being the exception).

I suppose it is possible given the crazy weather that a Vixen may have squeezed in a second or late litter

Vulpes vulpes only breed once a year..

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Posted : September 26, 2012 6:34 pm
Gilbert
Active Member

That's the norm everywhere. Depending on the species, fox kits aren't available this late in the year (fennecs being the exception).

I suppose it is possible given the crazy weather that a Vixen may have squeezed in a second or late litter

Vulpes vulpes only breed once a year..

I know thats the norm, but never say never lol

Gilbert

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Posted : September 26, 2012 6:39 pm
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