Foxes and Lambs
Myth : Foxes are a problem to lambs.
Truth : This myth that has already been repeatedly debunked by scientific studies, which DEFRA accepts.
According to Defra (2004) :
95% – of lamb loses are due to : abortion and stillbirth; exposure and starvation; infectious disease and congenital defects; poor husbandry farming practices.
5% – are due to predatory killings from : Dogs, birds of prey and other wild animals.
Hunt supporters falsely claim that the fox population needs to be controlled because foxes kill lambs, however, they do have a hidden agenda for spreading this myth, they want to hunt them.
A study of two Scottish hill farms found that less than 1% of lamb losses could be confidently attributed to fox predation.
Foxes sometimes feed off carcasses let rotting in the fields by farmers, which could also explain why a fox seen to be feeding off or carrying a carcass could be wrongly blamed and mistaken for the actual killers.
A fox would have little chance of killing a healthy lamb being protected by the mother ewe, however, they may take a dead or sick lamb which has been abandoned by its mother.
Despite repeated requests for farmers, landowners and foxhunters to provide video evidence of a fox actually killing a lamb, there has been very little evidence provided to back up this myth claim that foxes are actually a problem to lambs.
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