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 Post subject: Fox Population Question
PostPosted: 18 Jan 2011, 18:23 
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Joined: 17 Nov 2010, 19:35
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Location: Shen. Vally VA
I have been trapping a farm near my house and have been having good success :lol:. But I also don't want to take to many animals so I can trap there next year. The farm is about 150 acres with most of it fields and a smaller section of open woods. The property boarders 2 other woods that are pretty think woods but unfortunately I can't trap :(. I have taken 4 reds and 1 gray off of the property and I would think that there are more fox to be taken but also don't want to take to many. So I am wondering how you guys estimate a population on a property? It snowed this morning and I snared 2 reds and there were tracks through a lot of what I walked. Thanks for the help.

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PostPosted: 18 Jan 2011, 18:56 
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Just my 2 cent's, I've never had a problem w/trapping a farm "out". It's been my experience if you trapseveral and your #'s fall off, (depending on the weather and the time of yr. and your lay of the land) other critters from "farm you can't trap" will gladly take up residence once the smell of the previous occupants are removed. JMO. Nice catch's!

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PostPosted: 18 Jan 2011, 19:01 
I agree with watershedman. Take all you can, cause as the fox familes in the surroundings areas split up and the youngster move out on their own, they will repopulate the land you were trapping.


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PostPosted: 18 Jan 2011, 19:16 
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Joined: 04 Oct 2010, 20:41
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I have heard the same thing about others moving in once you remove the current residents. I think that's kind of the cool thing about predators, you can take all you want and chances are you will have a new group in by the next trapping/hunting season. I guess it's bad if you really want them gone, but fun if you like getting after them! Nice catches! Those are some really nice looking fox!

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PostPosted: 18 Jan 2011, 19:35 
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Joined: 30 Jan 2010, 16:53
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Location: Minnesota
awesome catches back40 :mrgreen: life has been too crazy for me to do much of anything right now, so i dont have much of a line out right now. :cry: :cry: i am only in my second season of trapping, so take this with a grain of salt...and i say this realizing that virtually anything can and does happen out in the woods. :--o

first thing to look at is if you are near a travel route. if you are lucky enough to have some kind of structure that disperses animals bordering the property or at least nearby, that is a definate plus. look for rivers/steams, RR trax, roads, powerline swaths, etc. get on google map and take a birdseye view. walk the perimeter and investigate everything. If this is the case, you probably dont have to worry much about de-populating the area. i think that set location would become more important to you, as you want to make sure you are setting the bulk of your traps near the dispersal route and not further away, thus catching more of the "resident" population.

i say resident population kind of tongue in cheek. i'm going to guess that these populations are pretty fluid. when you think about all the rigors of living outdoors, many many of these animals are not alive long due to predation, accidents, disease, starvation, severe weather, traffic ...the list goes on. i'm sure there are the occasional foxes that live to be a ripe old age, but they are definately the exception to the rule. foxes dont sit still long either. they have overlapping territories that they work, travel to find mates, get pushed out by bigger predators other fox, raptors (how would you like living under an eagle's nest if you were a fox? :shock: ) or encroaching development, again another long list. there is a reason they dont have one kit at a time but instead have a replacement factor of 3 or 4 times what is necessary to replace a breeding pair of foxes. man didnt create that necessity, nature did.

as for the neighboring woods, is someone else trapping there? if not, you can be sure that as you remove the "resident" foxes from your farm, others will move into the area, likely some from this piece of woods. if its a very good hunting ground, i would guess other animals will move in faster than you'd think. personally i think that the fox population has alot more to do with how many bobcats and yotes are in the area, than how hard foxes are trapped. now if you were a phil brown, that might be another case :P

something else to do is contact your local wildlife biologist and ask him the same stuff. these people can usually give you good info or at least an indication of how fragile or robust the general population is in a give area.

i'm sure someone else can find some holes in this but i hope that helps. keep the pics coming!

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PostPosted: 18 Jan 2011, 21:55 
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Joined: 24 Dec 2009, 15:09
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Location: Eastern S. Dakota
I read your post before I lefted work and was going to reply when I got home but others guys have already and I don't have too much to add. Here's just a few. As already mentioned nature doesn't like a vaccuum, so if you hit the reddies hard this year, others will fill the void. The neighboring farms that don't allow trapping (as far as you know) actually might become your replacement factories, especially if they surround the land you can set. Like Al said, I think the amount of coyotes probably impacts the fox popuations more than you would. Eastern SD used to have good fox numbers (and jackrabbits on the pasture and hay land) but since the 1980s coyotes have become the dominant predator here and numbers on those other two species have dropped immensely. Last thing is that I truly believe the Ridge and Valley country where you live (and areas on either side like southeast PA) probably have the best red fox habitat in the country. Enjoy yourself!! :)

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PostPosted: 18 Jan 2011, 22:12 
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Joined: 20 May 2010, 16:21
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Location: Kansas
I agree there will be more fox that come to the area, however I don't believe that they will necessarily be as many, or of the same size/age. It's been my findings with at least coons that you can reduce the population from the lands holding capacity to an extent to where it takes a couple years for them to recover fully, but they do recover. And there is nothing saying that you can't go right back there the next year and catch just as many animals, but I have found that areas where I have taken numbers of coons out of for several years the numbers can sometimes drop slightly, and for sure the size of the animals drop because we have taken out a number of the older more mature animals. Just something to think about. Me personally, I'd keep on trapping the property.

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PostPosted: 23 Jan 2011, 12:20 
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Joined: 21 May 2010, 09:45
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The average life span for a red fox in the wild is only 3 years. Why not take them now, the same fox won't be around long anyway :shock: :shock:


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