back to article Rampaging fox terrorises rural sports club, victim sustains ‘tweaked groin’

Shaken members of a Cambridgeshire sports club have recounted a terrifying ordeal at the jaws of a rampaging fox. According to an entertaining BBC report, the victims were confronted by the "vicious" creature as they attempted to leave Alconbury Sports and Social Club last Saturday night. In the ensuing panic, chairman Bruce …

Unhappy

Oh dear! But this is countryside life for you.

The 'hunting conspiracy' thing is clearly bollocks but quite frankly if an animal is pestering and apparently trying to bite people instead of running off then it's either protecting its young (having its den under a sports club? doubtful) or it's gone postal in which case it is liable to be shot just like would be done to a pet dog that had gone nuts.

Fortunately I live in urbanburbsville so I only have to put up with the godawful noise of foxes dogging and no actual attacks except the disapproving looks from them when I step out for a smoke, which for the record does not involve any groin-tweaking whatsoever.

Sadface icon because I'm not actually completely heartless.

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Pirate

Re: Oh dear! But this is countryside life for you.

Problem comes when townies release foxes from a town into the country. They're used to people, so no longer keep out of the way.

My fox trap is ready and waiting for the next fox that comes near my animals.

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Trollface

Re: the godawful noise of foxes dogging

Better or worse noise than dogs foxxing?

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Re: Oh dear! But this is countryside life for you.

> They're used to people, so no longer keep out of the way.

You may be right about where the fox came from, and maybe it's a reaction to having been dumped away from the doner mines of its normal habitat - though from personal experience they just don't care enough about people to notice us unless we have some spare shoes we want to get rid of.

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Re: Oh dear! But this is countryside life for you.

"Problem comes when townies release foxes from a town into the country. They're used to people, so no longer keep out of the way."

Also they constantly complain about the lack of entertainment, hence this fox's attendance of the local social club.

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Oh FFS... A better headline would be 'Humans reach new lows in cowardice'

The _only_ potential threat to humans from this fox is rabies, and there's a vacine for that. Any human, in this day and age, who runs away from a fox is a complete and utter coward - all you need to do is grab one of its limbs and fall on it -> squashed fox.

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FAIL

Re: Oh FFS... A better headline would be 'Humans reach new lows in cowardice'

I guess you have never had a rabies shot. I know a couple who did. They hurt like hell, multiple shots required and she almost died from an allergic reaction to the shots.

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Re: Oh dear! But this is countryside life for you.

No. Bears are okay in the US. We've imported everything else, why not those?

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Re: the godawful noise of foxes dogging

Ask the chicken lobby. After all, they must have had more govt influence.

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Re: Oh FFS... A better headline would be 'Humans reach new lows in cowardice'

Don't get bitten

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Re: Oh FFS... A better headline would be 'Humans reach new lows in cowardice'

I've had a series of rabies shots. They weren't fun, but they weren't nearly as bad as the tetanus shot which left me unable to walk without pain for days and gave me a needle phobia for years. And they're certainly not as bad as actually getting rabies.

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Re: Oh FFS... A better headline would be 'Humans reach new lows in cowardice'

Since the BBC report did say somebody had been bitten, that is an angle that needs checking. Did the fox have rabies? And if it did how did it get infected? But the failure to mention that risk is one of the things that can be counted against conspiracy claims. And if the report of somebody being bitten is true, the "think of the children" angle isn't stupid

There's been some pretty bogus claims about foxes. Most of the pressure to control them seems to come from people who do things like breeding pheasants to be released, bewildered, as targets for a "shooting estate". The biosecurity scares for chicken farming means that physical, essentially passive, security need to be used, and it all stops the foxes.

When I was in the farming business, there were some people who, frankly, scared me. I've had idiots with guns, out shooting game, walk out of the fog while I have been applying pesticides to a field. They didn't even bother to check whether any work was planned. And many hunts seem to be getting along better without foxes. There are people who enjoy the challenging riding across country, but don't want to kill anything.

And the sociopaths of this government—how else can you describe some Ministers without vulgarity—have revived the issue. The Countryside March was about a lot of things governments do to mess up rural people, but why have they latched on to the ability to kill foxes as the one they can fix?

And the ugly reality of wildlife is that local excesses of any species leads to lead to deaths from disease. Remember the urban foxes of Bristol? A wonderful documentary, but then they got thinned out by a disease outbreak.

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Re: Oh FFS... A better headline would be 'Humans reach new lows in cowardice'

They have pretty vicious teeth. I can't see a fox managing to bite an adult human fatally, but I can easily envision a trip to A&E for some stitches and a bit of a scar.

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Re: Oh FFS... A better headline would be 'Humans reach new lows in cowardice'

> Did the fox have rabies?

Unlikely in the UK. On a par in the unlikeliness scale as a banker having a conscience or a politician having a competence..

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Re: that is an angle that needs checking.

Yes it is, and it's a glaringly obvious oversight. Of course it's also possible they shot it in the head when they killed it.

The again Wiki claims Britain is rabies free so maybe not as obvious a question as it is in the US.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Oh FFS... A better headline would be 'Humans reach new lows in cowardice'

"all you need to do is grab one of its limbs and fall on it -> squashed fox."

Ah, yes. The small child who was attacked in London a few years ago should have known that.

Tut, stupid child.. (sarcasm for those who are hard of understanding)

I'll wager there was A: a Den nearby and that B: there was food. Either in a bin or carelessly discarded.

Foxes, like humans, will defend their young to the hilt or will protect a food source...

Like it or not, in 99% of cases like this, vermin, pests etc are there because WE have given them a reason to be there..

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Why didn't the others escape in the opposite direction when the man on the bike raced off into the field? I'm sure they could have raised a glass to his brave sacrifice at his wake.

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Childcatcher

Re: Why didn't the others escape

Indeed, it does seem rather silly of them, bordering on implausible.

In fact, I find myself swithering towards the same conclusion as the "unwashed, malcontented, probable anarchists," insofar as the whole story has bit of a whiff of pish about it.

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@Rich11

I hate today's veggies. Combine harvesters, decreasing circles. Bread. Where do they get their vitamins?

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Utter Nonsense

Are these people also terrified of aggressive cats, because they're about as dangerous? Of course, they kept the body of the fox to have examined for the implied rabies.

On a slightly pedantic note, foxes are not canine, but they are canids.

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Foxes generaly don't chase people

Unless they have been corned, have young in the vicinity, or Rabies.

I suggest that all four people involved should have Rabies shots immediately.

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Happy

Re: Foxes generaly don't chase people

For a moment there I thought you wrote that the four of them should be shot

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Trollface

Re: Foxes generaly don't chase people @ J G I

That's a bloody small tin to squeeze a fox into. How do they manage to chase people after they have been corned? Enquiring minds etc etc...

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Happy

Re: Foxes generaly don't chase people

I take exception. They need be hanged.

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Re: Foxes generaly don't chase people @ J G I

For some reason (possibly his years in the Army), my dad used to refer to corned beef as "corned dog" - which I now do. Is it such a long stretch to "corned fox"?

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Rabies?

Don't know the prevalence of rabies in the UK, but in Canada, a fox behaving in this fashion would be assumed to be rabid, put down and then tested. Anyone bitten would be getting rabies shots as a precaution before the testing was even completed.

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Boffin

Re: Rabies?

The UK was declared rabies free in 1922.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prevalence_of_rabies#United_Kingdom

Quarantine rules changed in 2012, so it might be possible.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-24569593

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Re: Rabies?

Even in the UK rabies testing should be automatic regarding bites and out of character behaviour for something like a normally timid fox.

Of course townies have become steadily wetter as they distance themselves from the natural world so being scared of a fox is hardly a surprise. Now a grumpy old badger? that I would give leeway to!

Wiating now for Daily Blah stories of deadly sparrows attacking people for crumbs from a sandwich.

"It looked me right in the eye and tweeted at me!"

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Re: Rabies?

"It looked me right in the eye and tweeted at me!"

Questions:

How did it get access to an iPhone?

And was Angry Birds installed?

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Re: Rabies?

Thank you for 'getting' that.

Some phone companies will do a deal with anyone that drops in to the shop (or flies into the window).

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Re: Rabies?

Nope, even a grumpy old badger can do nothing worse than give you a painful nip, unless you approach it with your 'intimates' on the wrong side of your trousers, in which case it's your own fault.

Why are people (the most dangerous animal on the planet) being so neutrotic that they're being freaked out by by animals that pose no realistic threat? What is so attractive about being a victim?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Rabies?

Well Lee,

Dumper truck reversing. Nothing we could do. Hope that chap lived. I have dashcam.

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Re: Rabies? and Sparrows

Not the sparrows you should be worried about, but definitely the gulls (not Girls) at Landudno.

Warning: do not attempt to eat your picnic lunch on the promenade nor your ice cream cone... and if you have been close enough to see the size of these birds then you will understand how they could do you a real nasty...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Rabies? and Sparrows

Llandudno.

You used the wrong first letter of the good township; Ll rather than L.

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Silver badge

Re: Rabies?

A late reply but a grumpy old badger is not something to be taken lightly, they can do a lot more than nip, a friends Jack Russel stupidly decided to follow a badger down into it's sett. Jack Russels are pretty fierce and something to be reckoned with in thier own right, this one when we finally got him out of the sett after having to dig into it a bit, need quite a few stitches and a good lie down for a bit. If he had been a drinking dog I would have given him a stiff brandy. The claws on a badger can dig through limestone and chalk.

There was a large sett in the wood at the top of my fields where I kept my horses in the '90s, we often used to get the local fuzz coming to warn us to keep an eye out for badger baiters ( big gambling money involved and dangerous people), he told me that before the pond scum would allow a dog to fight a badger they would bash it with a shovel to weaken it as a badger could do serious damage to a Staff or a PitBull if it was fully operational.

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Re: Rabies?

Having seen the damage done to a car that hit a badger I'm pretty sure if I encountered a annoyed one hitting it with a handy stick would not have much effect.

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We've had 'em in the back garden...

...which explained why the dog went spare at 2am. Thankfully our chickens are in covered runs or like most people round here we'd have lost them.

As to "a whiff of pish" given it was a Saturday night I think a whiff of the ale might be nearer the mark.

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Re: We've had 'em in the back garden...

"As to "a whiff of pish" given it was a Saturday night I think a whiff of the ale might be nearer the mark."

It would indeed seem to be a case of the inedible in pursuit of the inebriated...

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Anonymous Coward

'Tweaked' groin?

Is that like "hackers 'tweaked' OPM"?

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So couldn't they find a tennis racket or a hockey stick or something?

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Exactly, it was a sports club after all, there must have been a cricket bat somewhere.

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We used to have rabbits in our backyard, but then a red fox took up residence. After awhile, no more rabbits, and the fox left for better feeding grounds. FWIW, we live only a few blocks from the Fox River in Illinois... We now know how it got the name!

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Joke

"We now know how it got the name!"

Named after the TV channel?

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Thumb Up

Can you guess the city?

@Spaceman Spiff

I was born at the confluence of the Fox and Illinois river. I've fished and boated on both.

Love the Calvin reference. Waterson rocks!

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Is this "sports club"

The type where sporting "gentlemen" in ridiculous costumes with tall hats ride around on horses along with a bunch of dogs and chase foxes to death? If so, I say good on the fox for getting a little revenge!

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Re: Is this "sports club"

Once we started farming, dogs needed to either be domesticated or dead.

Being low status, had the fox got into the sports club its best strategy would have been to kill all the humans and scatter result about a bit before a higher status predator was attracted and displaced it from the kill - no one has told the fox's genes that we killed all the wolves.

Despite not despatching one, that fox changed those people's behaviour. This suggests the neural routing of any species can be changed by a bit of chasing around. It then follows that the men and women (this isn't golf) on horseback are doing a valuable job teaching the nasty little vermin some fear even if they don't ever catch one.

And townies who think vermin deserves fair play haven't thought that one through, rats have no emetic response so it's hardly fair to poison them is it? Cities - you're never more that ten feet from a Guardian reading idiot.

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This post has been deleted by its author

Re: Is this "sports club"

"Once we started farming, dogs needed to either be domesticated or dead."

No, dogs have *always* been domesticated. The definition of a dog is a domesticated wolf.

Otherwise you're right - the attitude of farmers has always been: if it isn't domesticated, then exterminate it.

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Re: Is this "sports club"

What *are* you on about? Foxes are not classed as vermin. The mounted morons who think it sporting to chase them with a pack of hounds however...

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Re: Is this "sports club"

Not necessarily domesticated wolf, Dingos are also candidates for domestication into dogs.

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